BBFC (Buttermilk Bacon Fried Chicken) with Bacon Thecha

Crispy, juicy, tender chicken thighs, marinated in a (not so) secret herb and spice rub, brined in buttermilk for 24 hours, double dredged in spiced flour, generously spiked with our favourite spicy Nomad bacon thecha, served alongside soft, fluffy bread, sweet bread n butter pickles and a homemade animal sauce.

Ingredient List.

1. Boneless chicken thighs and drums (with skin, this is based on preference, you could choose to go without skin but I’ve found that the skin helps the chicken crisp up better and absorb more flavour)

2. Colonel Savvy’s Secret herb and spice blend (Not so secret if you’ve stumbled upon the Holy Quail recipe) - Pretty much the same deal - salt, pepper, cayenne pepper powder, paprika powder, ghost pepper powder, garlic powder, onion powder, parsley flakes and basil flakes

3. Any brand of regular Flour (Maida), and Buttermilk (A large Amul’s spiced buttermilk pack will do if like me, your lazy butt don’t have access to homemade buttermilk)

4. A litre of regular vegetable oil - Canola or Sunflower will do. Since we plan on deep frying our chicken, have a little extra on hand to be on the safe side.

5. A wok or deep pan to deep fry the chicken, Kitchen/Paper towels to remove excess oil

6. A pair of tongs, extra vessels to store the flour and fresh fried chicken

7. Nomad’s Spicy Bacon Thecha

8. A good Mayonnaise, the spiciest hot sauce sourced from your favourite local vendor

9. A jar of sweet bread and butter pickles

10. A silent prayer to the Lord

Steps/ Procedure:

1. Recite that silent prayer to the lord with complete sincerity and devotion for two reasons. One, as a precautionary measure, since we’re going to be dealing with piping hot oil. Second, to fight off the Colonel’s envy, because after you try this, you’re never going to want to order fried chicken from a restaurant ever again. They’ll all pale in comparison to your Bacon Buttermilk fried chicken.

2. As always, carefully rince your chicken thighs and drums once you remove them from the packaging. Toss them into a bowl and prepare to assault them with our fiery “not so secret” spice mix

3. Toss in salt, pepper, generous amount of garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper powder, paprika powder, a little ghost pepper powder, and last but not the least, the chemical X to our powerpuff chicken - Nomad’s spicy bacon thecha.

4. Always remember that the taste of your chicken is directly proportionate to the sincerity of the massage with the marinade. So don’t treat it like a random piece of meat but affectionately tend to it as you would a lover, appreciating the supreme sacrifice made by a bird that gave its life for your palate.

5. Once you’ve payed homage to the recently deceased bird by caressing its legs and thighs in our dry spice blend, add an ample amount of buttermilk (1 cup to start) to the meat. Trust your instincts. If you feel like the marinade requires an additional topping of the spices, be generous with it. You can’t rush the marination process so be patient. The secret is to get the right balance in the ratio of spice to buttermilk. Ultimately, all the pieces need to brine in buttermilk for 24 hours to tenderise and soak up all that flavour.

6. Cover the container and place it in one of your shelves in the fridge for 24 hours. If you’re making a face right now as you read this, Chill! Relax those face muscles, 4- 6 hours in the fridge will do. Ultimately, this is a recipe with one single purpose. To turn all your frowns upside down.

7. Once you’re ready to dive into the fiery pits of hell (If one assumes hell has big hot drums of oil to cook fried chicken - doesn’t sound too bad eh?), sort all your vessels. - This is why chefs insist on having a clean and organised work station.

8. Place the wok with a good amount of oil on the stove.

9. Take another deep vessel to prep our batter. Add 2 - 3 cups of maida or flour to it. Now, salt your flour and add a generous amount of garlic powder, paprika, cayenne pepper powder and the ingredient that makes all the difference to our fried chicken - NOMAD’s spicy bacon thecha. Use a spoon (A DRY SPOON) to mix up all the flour and spices together.

10. Now comes the fun part. We’re going to engage in a little cat and mouse process called the double dredge. Simply put, we’re going to dip our chicken in the batter and coat it twice, for additional crispiness.

11. Take your vessel with chicken out of the fridge and place it next to the vessel with flour. Keep a fresh tray handy to place the coated chickens in before they go into the deep fryer/ hot oil cauldron.

12. Dip the buttermilk chicken once into the spiced flour mix. Now return the coated piece into the buttermilk marinade and dip, once the liquid marinade has engulfed your chicken again, return it to the flour and coat it for a second time. Dust off any excess flour and place it on the tray, ready for cooking.

13. Once all your pieces are coated and ready, Heat the oil on medium - high flame. Be careful while you place your chicken into the piping hot oil, lest the flames of hell spit at your pretty face. Allow the chicken to cook in hot oil for a minute to 90 seconds before you turn down the heat. This will enable you to get a nice crispy outer coat with good colour while the rest of the chicken cooks slowly inside.

14. The process of frying chicken will go on for about 8 - 12 minutes. While the chicken sizzles, let’s move onto another crucial sidekick that gives the BBFC its Mojo (Jojo?) Our Homemade Animal Sauce

15. For your Homemade animal sauce, add a tablespoon of a nice tasting mayonnaise into a bowl. Now add a dollop of seriously spicy ghost chilli hot sauce and give it a good stir until it emulsifies. Give it a lick. If it tastes like the devil’s underbelly, you’re on the right track. Add a little bit of pickle juice from your pickle jar to balance. Alternatively, you good add some honey, lime, or whatever you feel like to balance out the flavours. It’s called Animal sauce for a reason. Knock yourselves out and go crazy with it.

16. Place your fried chickens on a plate alongside a couple of pickles, a dollop of animal sauce and soft bread or buns.

17. If you’re feeling like a Nashville hot chicken twist on this, you could easily convert it by just creating a Nashville hot sauce to dress your chicken in. All you need is some melted butter or the hot oil that your chicken has cooked in, cayenne pepper, paprika powder, a little garlic powder and of course, our quintessential star ingredient - Nomad’s spicy Bacon Thecha.

Voila! Your Buttermilk Bacon Fried chicken is ready to be served, and adored. This recipe will give the Colonel a run for his money. One thing’s for certain - Fried chicken will never quite be the same! Bon Appetit!