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Savannah – Mrs. Wilkes and Fried Chicken

Last week, I shared with you my experiences at Hilton Head Island, South Carolina during our vacation week. However, I did not mention my visit to one of my favorite cities, Savannah.  Actually, we visited Savannah twice.  We left our home in North Carolina on Friday evening and drove for about three hours and spent the night in South Carolina.  We got up on Saturday morning and only had to drive two more hours to Savannah. They have a farmers market every Saturday morning and we arrived just in time to visit it.

We browsed through downtown and River street, ate lunch and ice cream at Leopolds and then headed for Hilton Head Island in the afternoon.  We returned to Savannah on Wednesday and ate lunch at Mrs. Wilkes.  I will share some of my experiences in Savannah this week but I must start with my favorite place, Mrs. Wilkes Boarding House.

We arrived at Mrs. Wilkes at around 11:30 and there was a line waiting for a table.  The food is served family style and can be a curiosity for someone that has never eaten there before.  We met a couple from New Jersey while waiting in line and told them how this restaurant evolved.  Mrs. Wilkes ran a boarding house in downtown Savannah and fed her boarders. That eventually evolved into a restaurant.  The food is so good and I have eaten there for over 20 years and never been disappointed. It is served family style and now I am a little more selective about what I eat there.  I always have a biscuit with her gravy because it is so good.  I eat lots of southern vegetables including rutabaga, yams and greens. Last week she had succotash and it was absolutely delicious. Of course, I always look forward to her fried chicken and I think it is my favorite.  It is crisp, non-greasy and flavorful.

This is  a picture of the street scene from Mrs. Wilkes while I was waiting in line.  I love the old homes in Charleston and Savannah.  In some ways they are so similar and in some ways they seem different.  I think there are more brick homes in Savannah than in Charleston.

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Of course, I wanted to prepare fried chicken when I came home.  However, if you read my blog post the other day when I tried to fry okra, you can understand why I decided to bake the chicken this time. I have posted Mrs. Wilkes recipe for her fried chicken on my blog before and here is a link to that post.

Below is another view of Jones Street in Savannah.

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When I returned from Savannah, I saw the recipe I am sharing with you today on my facebook page.  It was posted by my friend Dixie and I thought I would give it a try.

Oven Baked Chicken

baked fried chicken 002

1 pound of chicken breast tenderloin strips

Place the thawed chicken breast in a shallow bowl or pan and cover with milk.  Let soak for 20 to 30 minutes.  I used 1/2 milk and 1/2 evaporated milk

In a gallon freezer bag, combine

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon season all or Adolph’s

3/4 teaspoon pepper

1 cup flour

2 tsp. paprika

(I added 1/4 teaspoon of ground cayenne pepper to the mixture)

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.  Cut 1/2 stick of butter into a few pieces and place in a 9 x 13 pan.  Melt butter in pre-heated oven. Swirl the butter around the bottom of the pan.

Remove the chicken from the milk and shake any excess milk off the chicken.  Completely coat each piece with the seasoning mix. You can either shake the chicken in the bag, until coated, or dip each piece in the mixture until coated.

Place the chicken in the pan.  Cook for 20 minutes.  Turn each piece and continue cooking for 20 more minutes, or until cooked through.

We really enjoyed this chicken.  It had good flavor and was very moist.  If you like crispier chicken, you could put it under the broiler for just a few minutes on each side to make it crispier.

Happy Monday to You and I am looking forward to sharing more of my Savannah visit with you  this week.

4 responses »

  1. Oh how I miss Savannah……….Mrs. Wilkes does make the best fried chicken…….along with Paula at Lady & Sons……..hard pressed to pick the best.

  2. Your chicken looks delicious!


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