Heart Healthy from WakeMed Heart Center

Smoked Dill Pickle Brined Chicken

February 22, 2018 |

Recipe courtesy of Chef Matthew Register.
as seen on episode “Sea Salt“, Season 7

Flavor, NC | Sea Salt Brined Chicken


  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon whole cloves
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup sea salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 cups cold water
  • 1 tablespoon dill seeds
  • Dill Pickle Salt for finishing
  • 2 eggs
  • 4 boneless chicken breasts
  • 2 cups buttermilk, well-shaken
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons of black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of paprika

Make the pickle juice brine
1. Toss the mustard seeds, coriander seeds, peppercorns and cloves in a dry skillet over medium heat and toast, stirring constantly, until the seeds become aromatic, about 2 minutes.
2. In the meantime, in a small saucepan, combine the vinegar, salt, sugar, and cold water and bring to a boil, stirring, until the salt and sugar dissolve. Add this to the skillet along with the dill seeds. Remove from the heat and stir in the fresh dill.

Brine the fried chicken

3. Transfer the brine to a large bowl and add the chicken along with enough cold water to completely submerge the chicken. Cover and refrigerate for at least 3 hours and up to overnight. (The longer you brine the chicken, the more intense the pickle flavor and the saltiness.)
4. Remove the chicken from the brine and rinse it under cool water to remove any salt, seeds, or dill clinging to it.
5. Smoke chicken for 30 minutes. Remove and let cool.
6. Place the buttermilk and two eggs in a large bowl. Add Chicken.
7. Place the flour, black pepper and paprika in a separate large, shallow bowl and mix.
8. Heat oil to 350°F.
9. Working in small batches, remove the chicken from the buttermilk, one piece at a time, and dredge, turning to coat it evenly on all sides, beginning with the large pieces. Shake off any excess flour.
10. Still working in small batches, place the chicken in the hot oil and fry, turning once, until golden brown and cooked through and the breast meat registers 165°F (74°C) on an instant-read thermometer, 5 to 7 minutes per side. Do not overcrowd the skillet or the chicken will not fry evenly. If the chicken seems as if it’s browning too quickly, reduce the heat or use tongs to turn the pieces on their skinny sides. Bring the oil back up to temperature before starting the next batch.
11. Transfer the fried chicken to a wire rack situated on a rimmed baking sheet to drain. Season with dill pickle salt.

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Category: Recipes

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