We made a trip home to New Mexico this past week.   It was a beautiful time to be out at the farm, after a long hot summer, it has finally cooled off a bit and time to enjoy the outdoors.  My Mom has hummingbird feeders set up on the porch and we were mesmerized at how many little hummers were buzzing the feeders.  Usually we don’t get there until later in the fall and by then the little hummingbirds have left for warmer parts of the country.  Anyway, back to the chicken . . . my brother Carl spoiled us with his Ranch Chicken with all the trimmings of mashed potatoes and gravy, coleslaw, corn on the cob with iced tea.  Doesn’t that sound like the best comfort food anywhere!

Carl made a marinade for the chicken using a dry ranch dressing mix and buttermilk.

Pour the buttermilk into a large bowl.

Add the dry packets of ranch dressing and give it a stir.  Let it sit while you get the chicken ready.

Carl used a combination of boneless skinless thighs and breasts.  He placed a single layer of each into casserole dishes.  He had about 8 pieces in each casserole dish.

He poured the buttermilk ranch mixture over the chicken, covered it with aluminum foil and refrigerated overnight.  He saved a cup of the buttermilk ranch mixture to use later.

As you can see, he soaked it good.

He poured some flour in a bowl and dredged a piece of marinated chicken into the flour, making sure to coat on all sides.

And back it goes into the buttermilk ranch mixture.

Once more into the flour mixture.  This will make a nice crust on the outside of the chicken.  He only coated as many pieces that would fit the skillet.  Once the first batch had been pan fried, he coated another batch and pan fried them.

Into the hot skillet they go.  He’s only pan frying to get a golden crust, then he’s going to bake them until they are cooked through.

Once the chicken is pan fried, place it in a baking pan single file and spoon a little of the saved buttermilk ranch mixture on top.  Place it in a hot oven 400 degrees for 25-30 minutes.

Here it is.  The chicken is so tender and juicy inside and the crust is so tasty.   It’s such a treat when Carl makes his ranch chicken.

Carl’s Ranch Chicken

2 packets Dry Ranch Dressing Mix (he used Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing Mix)
1 quart Buttermilk
16 pieces boneless, skinless, Chicken Thighs and Breasts
Canola or Vegetable Oil
Salt to taste

Pour the buttermilk into a large bowl and add the packets of dry ranch dressing mix.   Stir until all dry ingredients are mixed in well. Set aside.

Layer the chicken in (2) 9 x 11 casserole dishes.  Pour the buttermilk ranch mixture over the chicken, reserving 1 cup of the mixture for later use.  Cover the chicken with aluminum foil and marinate overnight in the refrigerator or at least 2 – 3 hours.

Place 1 – 2 cups flour in a shallow bowl.  Take a piece of chicken and dredge in flour, then dip back into the buttermilk ranch mixture.  Once again dredge in flour and place in a skillet with enough Canola oil to coat the pan.  Do this with enough chicken to fill the skillet. You will need to cook the chicken in batches. Pan fry the chicken on both sides over medium high heat to make a brown crust.  Remove from the skillet onto a baking sheet, coated with cooking spray.  Take the reserved cup of buttermilk ranch mixture and spoon a little over each piece of chicken.  Place the chicken in a preheated 400 degree oven for 25 – 30 minutes.