Now, if you’re gonna make these, they gotta be on par with Roscoe’s in L.A. A lot of times people want to try shit at home that they get at a restaurant. This is one of those that I wanted to see if I could flip and make it work because I’m like damn near synonymous with chicken and waffles now. I tried and tried, added a little tweak here and there. And guess what? It worked. Now the real challenge here is taking time to brine and letting that battered chicken sit for 30 minutes before frying. Yeah, yeah, I know—you want it now.
Ain’t you ever heard that perfection takes time? The wait is worth it, and so is keeping that canola oil on deck. Thatoil and brine makes chicken mighty fine.
FOR THE CHICKEN:
1 3 1/2-lb [1.6-kg] whole chicken, cut into 10 pieces (2 wings, 2 legs, 2 breasts cut crosswise, 2 thighs)
3 cups [420 g] all-purpose flour
3/4 cup [105 g] yellow cornmeal
4 tsp cayenne pepper
3/4 tsp baking powder
4 tsp cracked black pepper
3 tsp salt, plus more for seasoning
2 cups [480 ml] buttermilk
1 qt [960 ml] canola oil
FOR THE WAFFLES:
1 3/4 cups [245 g] all-purpose flour
1/4 cup [50 g] granulated sugar
3 Tbsp yellow cornmeal
1/2 tsp baking soda2 large eggs
2 cups [480 ml] buttermilk
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
8 Tbsp [1 stick, or 110 g] unsalted butter, melted, plus more for serving
Maple syrup, for serving
TO FRY THE CHICKEN:
1. In a large Dutch oven over medium heat, heat the canola oil to 350°F [180°C]. Set a wire rack over a plate or line a pan with brown paper and set aside.
2. Working in batches beginning with the drumsticks, carefully add the chicken to the hot oil, careful not to crowd the chicken, otherwise it’ll become greasy. Once the chicken is added, the oil’s temperature will drop to between 300°F to 320°F [150°C to 160°C]. Watch and adjust the heat to maintain a consistent 350°F [180°C] temperature.
3. Fry the drumsticks for about 15 minutes, or until golden. Once the chicken is done, remove each piece with tongs and transfer to the prepared rack or pan to drain. Sprinkle generously with salt.
4. Fry the breasts and thighs for about 10 minutes, or until golden. If the chicken is getting too dark, lower the heat. When done, transfer to the rack or pan. Sprinkle generously with salt.
5. Fry the wings for about 8 minutes, or until golden. When done, transfer to the rack or pan. Sprinkle generously with salt.
6. Let the chicken rest for at least 10 minutes before serving.
TO MAKE THE WAFFLES:
1. Preheat a waffle maker to 350°F [180°C].
2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, sugar, cornmeal, and baking soda until combined. In another bowl, beat the eggs and add the buttermilk, vanilla, and melted butter. Gradually add the dry mixture to the wet until incorporated (the batter will be lumpy).
3. Following the manufacturer’s instructions, pour the batter into the waffle maker and
cook the waffles until golden brown