Andrew Zimmern attends the Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival presented by Capital One - Backyard BBQ presented by Pat LaFrieda Meats hosted by Dario Cecchini and Andrew Zimmern on October 16, 2022 in New York City. (Photo by Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for NYCWFF)
Andrew Zimmern's Unexpected Ingredient For Flavorful Fried Chicken
By Kuamel Stewart
While the textures and flavors of fried chicken are wonderful in traditional recipes, celebrity chef Andrew Zimmern takes his version to another level by adding dried limes.
Dried limes (or black limes) are prominent in Middle Eastern and North African cuisine, and Zimmern claims that using them in fried chicken garners a delicious depth of flavor.
Fresh limes are quickly heated in boiling water, dropped into freezing water, and dried until they harden into smooth, black orbs that are soft enough to be ground down.
Black limes add strong notes of tart, sweet, and citrusy flavors to create the ultimate savory chicken. You can use dried limes in two different ways when cooking.
One way to use dried limes is to grind them into a powder as a seasoning or garnish. Andrew Zimmern crushes them with a mortar and pestle for his fried chicken recipe.
Zimmern seasons the flour dredge and buttermilk with the dried lime grains before marinating and coating the chicken to give it a rich, complex, and savory flavor.
Another option is to keep the limes whole. Whole, dried limes are typically used in soups and stews so they can impart flavor into the cooking liquid, then removed before serving.