As the Executive Chef of the Michelin-starred Solbar in luxury hotel resort Solage Calistoga, Brad Cecchi delights in using Northern California ingredients, selecting Clover Sonoma products from butter, to buttermilk for his culinary creations. Brad showcases his sense of home to visitors to Napa Valley from across the globe with his fine-tuned skills and a passion for  Northern California’s farmers, ranchers, artisans and vintners. This summer he’ll be opening his own restaurant, Canon East Sacramento.

At home, Brad cooks for his wife, Mackenzie, and hosts dinner parties for friends with some of his favorite recipes – including his own take on Buttermilk Fried Chicken. Create your own at home, using Clover Low Fat Buttermilk for a perfectly crispy crunch.

ingredients

8 chicken thighs, or 4 chicken thighs and 4 drumsticks, skin on

1 quart Clover Low Fat Buttermilk

Clover Buttermilk Brine (recipe follows)

Seasoned Flour (recipe follows)

Seasoning Mix (recipe follows)

1 quart Canola Oil

 

Buttermilk Brine:

½ gallon Clover Low Fat Buttermilk

½ cup Salt

Zest of 4 lemons

1 head of garlic cut in half

3 tbsp of cracked black peppercorns

Directions: Combine all ingredients.

 

Seasoned Flour:

4 cups All Purpose Flour

1 cup Cornmeal

3 tbsp Salt

3 tbsp Ground black pepper

1 tsp Onion powder

1/8 tsp Cayenne pepper

Directions: Mix together ingredients in large mixing bowl.

 

Seasoning Mix:

¼ cup Kosher salt

1 tsp Smoked paprika

1 tsp Black garlic powder

¼ tsp Celery seed

¼ tsp Fennel seed

¼ tsp Mustard seed

Steps

  1. Place chicken thighs and legs in the Clover Buttermilk Brine for 12 hours. Remove chicken from brine and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, mix Seasoned Flour.
  3. In a separate large bowl, pour Clover Low Fat Buttermilk.
  4. To make the seasoning mix, toast spices in dry sauté pan, then grind finely. Combine with salt and paprika. Place chicken in seasoning mix, making sure it is fully covered before moving it to the fresh buttermilk and submerging fully. Next, dunk chicken back into the seasoned flour before putting into fryer.
  5. In a large pot, heat canola oil to 325 degrees. Fry chicken in canola oil for 13 minutes. Remove from oil and allow to drain on a baking rack, and season with Seasoning Mix. Pair with your favorite mashed potatoes or fluffy biscuits, and enjoy!