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91 www.wrightsvillebeachmagazine.com WBM The Venue: genteel plantation Currie, North Carolina The Bird: WHOLE FROM THE BURGAW PIGGLY WIGGLY. tuck a napkin in your shirt because Genteel Plantation manager Ricky Kelly’s fried chicken will take you back to when your mother used to fry chicken at home. Kelly is manager of Bobby Harrelson’s 875-acre private quail-hunting retreat. Not only is he the property’s caretaker, quail raiser, dog trainer and hunting guide, Kelly, along with Louise Spencer, cooks for plantation guests. They say the secret to great fried chicken is nothing special — just salt, pepper and flour. “But, we cook it fairly slow over low heat in a cast iron skillet and hardly ever use brand-new grease,” Kelly says. “I hate brand-new grease. She hates brand new grease.” Kelly says it doesn’t brown as well. Each time chicken is fried, Kelly pours the remaining grease into a metal coffee can and keeps it refrigerated. A little new oil is added to each batch. The meal is rounded out with straight-from-the-garden vegetables like collards or cabbage, peas, butter beans, okra or rutabaga. “We always have rice and gravy,” Kelly adds. “Because the chicken drippings make such good gravy.”


2015-6
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