F I'm So Vintage: fried chicken memories
Friday, July 18, 2014

fried chicken memories



Summer always reminds me of fried chicken. Hot sunny Sunday afternoons out in the backyard with the smell of fried chicken sneaking out the back screened door. Mama would be standing over what had to be an unbearably hot stove frying up chicken in her two cast iron skillets. Fresh snapped green beans seasoned with country ham bubbled on one burner and potatoes for mashing on another, while fresh homemade biscuits baked in the oven. As soon as the chicken frying was done Daddy would step in to make his secret recipe of southern milk gravy. I was twelve before he passed that secret on to me. It was one of the proudest days of my life. Mama's chicken and Daddy's gravy put Colonel Sanders to shame here in Kentucky. 

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Every summer Sunday I would sit on my swing lazily swinging back and forth while my bare toes trailed a line in the dust just waiting for that chicken dinner. For Mama to call that supper was ready. For the best part of the week, in my opinion. I was a child who didn't eat much. A child, who when Daddy came home from work at six o'clock would be sitting at the dining room table, and when he asked why I was at the table before supper was ready I would answer that I was still sitting there from lunch because I refused to eat. But you would never catch me not eating that fried chicken supper.


When I was nine we moved to Canada, away from my little southern home. We moved into a big house and my parents did a lot of entertaining of my father's clients from all over the world. My mother was a gourmet cook and served some amazing dinners, but her fried chicken with Daddy's gravy was a favorite. I'll never forget the man from Australia, who at the end of the meal one night asked if anyone else wanted more potatoes and gravy. When the answer came back as no, he took the big serving bowl of potatoes, covered them with gravy, and proceeded to finish them off, wiping the remaining gravy from the bowl with a leftover biscuit.

I have many memories of wonderful meals from over the years, but whenever I catch the smell of chicken frying I am transported back to our first little house and summer Sundays. Of Mama and Daddy in that small hot kitchen cooking up the best meal ever. 

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18 comments:

  1. My fried chicken is a hit here too. Nothing better than good ole fashioned southern cooking :)

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    1. It might not be the healthiest, but it sure tastes good :)

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  2. what a beautiful beautiful memory, so many lessons to be learned from this single post,

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  3. Nice memory - your words bring the taste and scents of that meal right thru the screen :-)

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    1. Thanks. The whole time I was writing it I could have sworn I smelled the chicken frying. :)

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  4. Yes, I did the same. Did your mama or daddy kill the chicken. I didn't like watching that part.
    Brenda

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  5. No, our chickens came from the grocery. :)

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  6. Laura, I like your memory of fried chicken with your family. My mom was not much of a cook, because not much to cook around our house. But one thing she could cook well was fried chicken. In later years when mom had a smoke alarm, it would go off while she was frying that chicken. We used to tease that , once the smoke alarm went off the chicken was done. LOL. Blessings to you for a great weekend, xoxo,Susie

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  7. I love your story about the smoke alarm. Nothing like mom's fried chicken. Have a wonderful weekend, Susie. :)

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  8. Food can inspire such great memories of childhood. I used to love my Grannie Lucille's fried chicken and country ham. I miss those!

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    1. I wish my mom had written down her recipe, but she says she never really had a recipe. She just knew how much to throw in. :)

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  9. I loved this post. I have similar memories. It was not until my mother was in her 70's that she shared with us that she hated fried chicken!!!

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    1. What a funny story. I wonder why she didn't tell you before then :)

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  10. What a lovely post. I'd love to know how your mama made her fried chicken. Care to share a recipe?

    I'm glad to see I'm not the only one who had to sit at the table until I finished what was on my plate. I've eaten many a plate of ice cold mashed potatoes in my day. Ugh. I still don't care much for them.

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  11. Mama never wrote it down. She just knew what to add and she doesn't seem to want to share. Ice cold food isn't too great, but I held out until they just gave up :)

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  12. Laura, This is such a sweet memory. I can just imagine to delicious smells coming from your little southern home. Isn't it amazing that something so simple can be so meaningful? Enjoy your weekend! xxleslie

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  13. OH what a delicious post ! :) I chose to stay on the swing under the shade tree with you and let your mama handle the hot stove ....

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