Shaianin

Leslie's Fried Chicken

34 posts in this topic

:blush: The sign is still up for the old restaurant on the Old Dallas Highway in Waco for some of the best fried 'chikin' ever. Everyone thinks I am nutso when I put honey on hot fried chicken, but have you ever noticed? All chicken places (including franchises of all kinds) have honey. Underpaid underlings think it is for the biscuits, but I know better. Honey is for pouring over a steaming hot drum stick, trying to get it to your mouth before it pours off the bottom and leaves burns on your chin. *sigh* Does anyone out there have a recipe for it? Please help a poor Texas girl who would like to recover a bit of her childhood!! Also looking for those cruchie things they had at the old Hickory Stick, also gone forever, Oh, and while we're at it, those super delicoioso steak fingers at Kim's Drive in.

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Shaianin, I wish I had those recipes too!!

If you are in Waco, the library has 2 cookbooks with several "Old Waco" recipes in them!! "Hearts and Flours" by The Junior League, and "The Hamilton House Cookbook"!! If I can find my disks where I copied them I will post them.

Waco used to have some really good eatin' places!! Too bad none of the recipes were kept by family members!!

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:P No longer in Waco,now in LONGHORN Country! How 'bout that baseball team!! I wonder if an email to the Waco paper would help.... Paula, if you find those cookbooks, I would love to have a copy of each. Send to Shaianin "at" aim.com. I have found that this website, er...Texas Cooking has some wonderful stuff!! HEB has some good stuff too on it for Texas stuff. I have been thinking about that chikin ;-) I wonder if they used pancake mix for the breading?

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AWESOME baseball team!! Best games I've seen in a long time!! There are more Longhorns up here than Baylor Bears!!

I tried contacting the paper several years ago and all they have is the barbecue sauce recipe from Crestwood that was on the corner of Hillcrest and Lake Air.

Give me a couple of days and I'll see what I can find for you. I have over 7500 disks of recipes, so it may take a few minutes!! If I can't find the disks, I will check the books out at the library and post from them!!

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:food-smiley: OMG...did you get that recipe for the Crestwood bbq sauce??? I haven't checked my posts in forever...I would love to have that one! Used to stop there for barbque turkey sandwiches on the way out to Airport Park!!

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Leslie, your Waco fried chicken sounds so very familiar to the fried chicken served at Meyer's in Amarillo. It was the best fried chicken ever. They too served honey with the chicken -=- without having to ask if you wanted it. If someone comes up with the receipe, I wish they would share it.

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:blush: The sign is still up for the old restaurant on the Old Dallas Highway in Waco for some of the best fried 'chikin' ever. Everyone thinks I am nutso when I put honey on hot fried chicken, but have you ever noticed? All chicken places (including franchises of all kinds) have honey. Underpaid underlings think it is for the biscuits, but I know better. Honey is for pouring over a steaming hot drum stick, trying to get it to your mouth before it pours off the bottom and leaves burns on your chin. *sigh* Does anyone out there have a recipe for it? Please help a poor Texas girl who would like to recover a bit of her childhood!! Also looking for those cruchie things they had at the old Hickory Stick, also gone forever, Oh, and while we're at it, those super delicoioso steak fingers at Kim's Drive in.

no, I don't have those recipes, but I remember going to Leslie's as a special Sunday treat. We had to drive over from Hubbard. However, I do have the recipe for George's Chef Special Dressing. :

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Leslie's Fried Chicken was my favorite restaurant when I was growing up in Waco. And I loved the honey! Thanks for bringing back a wonderful memory for me. I'm sorry I don't have the recipe but it's very similar to my mother-in-law's breading recipe. She soaks the chicken pieces in buttermile overnight, dredges them in flour with salt and pepper, dips them fresh buttermilk and dredges them again and fries everything in about 2" of Crisco. Now I'm hungry!

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:huh: Ok, People, still haven't gotten the recipe.....Maybe someone has the recipe for Youngblood's??? Very similar...although I hear there is a restaurant near the Sportatorium in Dallas downtown area that is using the Leslie's recipe. Not a great part of town, but supposedly limos pull up with people in formal wear coming by for a late night dinner....Keep looking! Anyone got old Waco cookbooks lying around? Wouldn't mind having the old Kim's Drive in recipe for steak fingers as well!

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There were also Leslie's in Corpus Christi and Austin (perhaps some other Texas cities?). I remember eating at the one in Waco on trips from Corpus to Dallas back in the 60s. We used to go eat at the one in Corpus during the 60s when I was a kid. I believe it was on Leopard Drive, but hard to remember. I *think* that the guy who owns Threadgills in Austin may have one of the Leslie's signs. He collects old stuff like that and has a "museum" of old Texas restaurant signs and memorabilia behind the Threadgills on Lamar in Austin.

I do have a question for you Wacoites: Does anyone remember a BBQ place near downtown that basically served up nothing but beef? I went to a place like that while visiting in the early 70s, but don't remember a name or exact place.

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Leslie, your Waco fried chicken sounds so very familiar to the fried chicken served at Meyer's in Amarillo. It was the best fried chicken ever. They too served honey with the chicken -=- without having to ask if you wanted it. If someone comes up with the receipe, I wish they would share it.

And the chicken gravy served on the mashed potatoes at Meyer's in Amarillo. I still love honey on my chicken and have been searching to no avail for that sumptuos gravy. Please...someone has to have a recipe.

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I do have a question for you Wacoites: Does anyone remember a BBQ place near downtown that basically served up nothing but beef? I went to a place like that while visiting in the early 70s, but don't remember a name or exact place.

yeah, maybe it's the Hickory Stick? Off of 19th, close to the campus of McLennan Community College? It's long gone as well.... :titanic:

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yeah, maybe it's the Hickory Stick? Off of 19th, close to the campus of McLennan Community College? It's long gone as well.... :titanic:

seems nothing lasts anymore. i do have some news about Leslie's, however. I contacted Eddie Wilson, proprietor of Threadgill's here in Austin (former proprietor of the Armadillo World Headquarters). He gave me the name of Joe Ables, whose family was supposedly instrumental in building the Leslie's chain. Joe is now the owner of the Saxon Pub here in Austin. I have not been able to reach him yet (guess I'll have to go over to the Pub and chase him down), but I will try to follow up and see if he can offer insights to the recipe for the chicken. Maybe I can talk him into publishing it or something. I'll post more when I find out.

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Yay!! Other news on this front, got a contact from a guy from Ft Worth who lives in northern climes who has done some detective work on the recipe thru some contacts in Waco, and we may have something there as well!!! Whoohoo!! Posted this in '05 and gettin' some results!! Ask Joe if he can get some passes?? ;-) :mango:

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no, I don't have those recipes, but I remember going to Leslie's as a special Sunday treat. We had to drive over from Hubbard. However, I do have the recipe for George's Chef Special Dressing. :

From Hubbard? Did u know Matt Morris who played football there in the 1980s?

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I'm not from Waco either but I would love some of those recipes as well! :P

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Would you rather eat honey or bbq sauce with your chicken?

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:blush: The sign is still up for the old restaurant on the Old Dallas Highway in Waco for some of the best fried 'chikin' ever. Everyone thinks I am nutso when I put honey on hot fried chicken, but have you ever noticed? All chicken places (including franchises of all kinds) have honey. Underpaid underlings think it is for the biscuits, but I know better. Honey is for pouring over a steaming hot drum stick, trying to get it to your mouth before it pours off the bottom and leaves burns on your chin. *sigh* Does anyone out there have a recipe for it? Please help a poor Texas girl who would like to recover a bit of her childhood!! Also looking for those cruchie things they had at the old Hickory Stick, also gone forever, Oh, and while we're at it, those super delicoioso steak fingers at Kim's Drive in.

Oh my goodness, I can't believe it. I can taste that Leslies fried chicken now. And while you're looking for that recipe, would you

also look for the Elite Cafe's salad dressing. And I wonder if Mrs. Keatons bakery left the recipe for cream puffs to someone. They

were the best.

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Update~~ James has made some progress in searching out the recipe!!!

Yesterday I spent almost two hours on the phone with a man that was one of the first managers at Youngblood's restaurant in Waco. He actually trained the next 5 managers as they opened new restaurants. He is 81 years old and loved telling his stories about Youngblood's. Nalers came from Youngblood's and he told me the story of Willie Naler who ran off with one of the Youngblood's secretaries and started his own chicken restaurant in Dallas. He then opened some others in other places. A guy named Church also started working for Youngblood's and got one of the Youngbloods to agree to open some take-out-only stores in some old Dairy Queens that had closed. He had four of them. Then Church went on and started his own chicken place and left Youngblood's. He also changed his recipe to what we know today as Church's Fried Chicken.

There are a bunch of other stories like that but I was mainly interested in the recipe. He told me exactly how they made Youngblood's chicken. I see now why there is no recipe anywhere because it was more of a process than it was a recipe. One of the Youngbloods figured out how to "hot scald" the chicken to process them easier. They discovered that this changed the taste and made the batter stick to them. They tried to get the batter to stick to them without this process and it wouldn't stick. He told me some things to try to replicate this process and I am going to try them. He also said that Leslie's bought all their chicken from Youngblood's.

Apparently Youngblood's began by raising chickens, then began selling eggs to chicken farmers, then began selling chicken feed to the farmers, and then buying their chickens back at wholesale costs. They finally opened the restaurants to move more chickens out the door.

I am going to try and see if some of the ways of preparing the chicken can be done on a small scale at home. There are very few ingredients. He also said they never marinated a chicken. They came to the restaurants processed and frozen. They thawed them, put them into flour, then into a wet mix, then back into the flour, then into the fryer at 350. I asked how it formed the batter, and he said you will see when you dip it that way and that the wet mix batter was very thin. Youngblood's also did not use buttermilk. I have heard so many stories from employee's families that said Leslie's used buttermilk. It makes me wonder if the two recipes were actually different, but tasted similar because of the processing of the chickens.

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:D:lol: Ok, people! We now have the "recipe" but it is industrial portions, tweaking is being done to make it work for home use, and YES! there is a secret ingredient! Update coming soon!!! :pickle2:

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Ok, people, here it is....

have a bowl with flour, we have seasoned it a bit with white pepper and a bit of salt, to taste....

Dip your chicken peices in the flour and then dip in the following mixture and back into the flour:

1 Cup powdered whey (Baking type- sweet powdered whey)This is not readily available in grocery stores, we found in online at www.berryfarms.com

3/4 cup powdered non/fat dry milk

1/4 cup salt (was a little salty- I might reduce this slightly next time)Try using just half of this or less, depending on how much you put in the flour.

2/3 cup water (I had to guess on the amount of water)

This mixture needs to be thin, the combination gives it the batter texture.

Dust chicken in flour, then into wet mix, then back into flour, shake off excess, cook in oil at 350 degrees for 12 minutes.

Evidently the whey is what give it the flavor. We have also used buttermilk powder in place of the dry milk and whey and it comes pretty close! This works best in a deep fryer, rather than pan frying.

The crust is amazing, holds up well a couple of days in the fridge.! :lol:

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