Fried Chicken’s Deliciousness Explained With Science

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Battered and deep-fried chicken might be one of the most delicious foods ever. But what makes this summer picnic staple so tasty? It all comes down to the chemistry of frying. In the latest Reactions video, learn how the delicate dance of fat at high temperatures leads to a crispy, savory summer snack.

image/text credit: Reactions

The video explains the various chemical reactions taking place in the pan, while your chicken is frying. See to get the perfect crunchy skin, your chicken needs to be dunked in oil that’s between 302 and 374 degrees Fahrenheit. To manage this without a deep fryer, all you need is a deep cast iron skillet and canola, vegetable, or peanut oil. Using any other cooking oil could tamper with the flavor or cause too much smoke.(delish)

As long as the chicken is at the proper temperature, the process of convection occurs, meaning hotter oil rises and colder oil sinks. That heat then diffuses through the raw center of the chicken in a process called conduction.

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While gently browned fried chicken has a pleasant buttery, nutty flavour, the oxidation of certain fatty acids like linoleic acid can produce volatile compounds which are smelly and can easily go airborne and fly into your nostrilsBattered and deep-fried chicken might be one of the most delicious foods ever. But what makes this summer picnic staple so tasty? It all comes down to the chemistry of frying.

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