International Recipes and Cooking Around the World

Wiener Backhendl

Wiener Backhendl (Austrian fried breaded chicken)

(Austrian breaded fried chicken)

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Viennese fried chicken has a history that goes back to the 18th century, when it was in vogue as a dish for the aristocracy and upper classes. Serve backhendl with lemon wedges and parslied potatoes, potato salad or a tossed green salad. Backhendl is popular in Munich as a dish served at Oktoberfest celebrations. Also known as Backhähnchen or poulet frit à la viennoise.

4 to 6 servings

Ingredients

  • Chicken, cut into serving pieces -- 3 pounds
  • Lemon juice -- 2 tablespoons
  • Salt and pepper -- to season
  • Flour -- 1 cup
  • Eggs, beaten with a little water -- 2
  • Breadcrumbs -- 1 1/2 cups
  • Oil for deep frying

Method

  1. Toss the chicken in a large bowl with the lemon juice, salt and pepper. Set aside to marinate for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Put the flour in one bowl, the eggs in another bowl and the breadcrumbs in a third bowl. One at a time, dip the chicken pieces first in the flour, then in the egg, and finally in the breadcrumbs to coat. Set the breaded chicken pieces on a baking sheet to let the coating set.
  3. Heat about 2 inches of oil to 375°F in a deep skillet or Dutch oven. Deep fry the chicken pieces for 10 minutes, turning to brown both sides.
  4. Reduce heat to low and continue to cook for another 20 minutes, turning often. Drain on paper towels and serve hot.

Wiener Backhendl Variations

  • Finishing in the Oven: After browning, remove the chicken pieces to a rack-lined baking sheet and finish cooking in a 350°F oven for about 20 to 25 minutes.

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