Lunchbreak: Fried Chicken Cobb Salad

Midday News

Nate Henssler – Executive Chef and Partner, Roots Handmade Pizza

Roots Handmade Pizza

744 S Dearborn St in the South Loop


Fried Chicken Cobb Salad  (serves 4)

Buttermilk Black Truffle Dressing  (makes 1 quart):

1 whole egg

1egg yolk

½ cup buttermilk

1 lemon, juiced and zested

2 ½ cup vegetable oil

2 Tbsp truffle sauce  (available for purchase at most grocery and specialty stores)

Salt and pepper to taste

Place whole egg, egg yolk, buttermilk, lemon juice, and lemon zest in a small mixing bowl.  Using a whisk, mix quickly, and add the oil slowly to form an emulsion. After all of the oil is added, add your truffle sauce then season with salt and pepper.  Transfer to a 1-quart container for storage.  

Seasoned Flour for Chicken:

4 cups white flour

1 Tbsp onion powder

.5 Tbsp  garlic powder

1 tsp light chili powder

1 tsp paprika

1 Tbsp ground black pepper

1 tsp mustard powder

1 tsp cayenne

2 tsp salt

Combine all ingredients until evenly mixed.  Keep this flour in the bowl for later.

Buttermilk Brine for Chicken: 

1 cup buttermilk

½ cup Frank’s Red Hot Sauce

4 really big boneless skin-on chicken thighs 

Cut the chicken into 1” pieces.  Combine the buttermilk and Frank’s Hot Sauce add then add chicken. Let marinade for at least 4 hours.

Biscuits (makes 6):

2 ½ cups white flour

2 Tbsp baking powder

2 Tbsp sugar

1 tsp salt

2 whole sticks of cold unsalted butter, cut into 1” cubes

1 cup buttermilk

Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and then add the butter.  Using your hands and fingers, work the butter into the flour until you have pea sized pieces of butter.  Add the buttermilk and stir until just combined.  Turn out onto a floured surface, pat down until it is 1 ½” in height.  Using a 2” ring mold.  Place these biscuits onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet, and into the refrigerator for at least 4 hours.  Bake at 350 degrees for 15-20 minutes or until golden brown.  

To Cook The Chicken:

All the marinated chicken thighs

1 batch of seasoned chicken flour

4 cups vegetable oil

Pour the vegetable oil into a medium sauce pot, heat to 350 degrees.  Remove the chicken from the buttermilk, place into the bowl of seasoned chicken flour.  Using your fingers, give the chicken an even coat of flour, gently shake it off and return it to the buttermilk.  Stir it gently so it is coated in the buttermilk, then place back into the flour.  Again, using your hands, work the chicken until it is evenly coated, remove, shake off and place on a plate.  Carefully place each piece of chicken into the hot vegetable oil, stirring so it does not stick to the bottom.  Cook until golden brown, about 5 minutes, remove with a slotted spoon and place on a wire rack to hold.  

To Make The Salad:

3 cups chopped romaine

3 cups arugula

3 cups shredded cabbage

1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut in half

1 cup dill pickles,  ½ inch dice

1 cup  fresh corn kernels, cut off of the cob

½ cup scallions, sliced thin

3 Tbsp fresh dill, picked

¾ cup  buttermilk black truffle dressing

1 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

Salt and pepper to taste

4 hard-boiled eggs, cut into quarters

All of the fried chicken

4 biscuits, broken into large pieces

Place romaine, arugula, cabbage, tomatoes, pickles, corn, scallions, dill and dressing in a large mixing bowl and then add salt, pepper, and lemon juice. Gently toss the salad to evenly coat all products.  Taste to see if it needs more seasoning or lemon juice.  Plate salad on a large platter and then place all the pieces of fried chicken, hard-boiled eggs, and broken up biscuits on top of the salad. Enjoy!


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