Football Season ✔️

Bargiving at The Houndstooth

Another football season is in the books with these fine and amazing people. Wouldn’t want to get into the trenches or the weeds with anyone else.

Pictured from Left to Right. Top: Me, Michael Pasqualotto, Sam Willingham, Mac Ozment, Anthony Hansler, Bruce Logue, Brett Allen.

Bottom: Dezarae Rogers, Jessica Geng, Olivia Hodges, Brianna Dinicola, Ashley Hood, Laura Glynn, Aidan Farish, Morgan Cavallaro.

Soda Soaked Fried Chicken

About a month ago I found this recipe for fried chicken.

I had never fried chicken before on my own, but this recipe looked damn good so I had to try it.

The recipe, which I will get into and explain shortly, calls for the chicken to marinate in Coca Cola.

Now I’ve heard of Coca Cola being used in recipes before, but never in fried chicken. So that alone peaked my interest.

As I was whipping everything up, it dawned on me that the recipe did not have a name. So as I was working, I made it my mission to come up with one. I did…


How did it turn out?


I’m not going to waste anymore time. Let’s get into the recipe.

First the ingredients. Starting with the brine.



  • 2 cups of Coca cola
  • 5 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 tbsp. of salt
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tsp of mild/medium hot sauce (Franks/Cholula)
  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts

Next up, the seasoned flour.

Seasoned Flour

  • 1 cup of all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp of black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp of onion powder
  • 1/2 tsp of smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tsp of cayenne pepper

You gotta fry the chicken.

So here is what to use and how much.


  • 2 cups of peanut oil

Oh and did I mention that with this recipe the chicken rests over a bed of garlic butter rice?

Here’s what you need to make it.

Garlic Butter Rice

  • 1 cup of jasmine rice
  • 1 1/2 cups of water or broth
  • 1 tbsp of butter
  • Salt
  • Spring Onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic

A couple things to know and consider before putting everything together:

1. Know that frying the chicken in a cast iron skillet is the way to go. So if you don’t have one, then consider getting one. It’s a great investment.

2. Know that you will not finish eating all of the chicken and rice by yourself. So if you know anyone who is free and not doing anything, then consider inviting them over to partake in the deliciousness.

With that being said, let’s get into the recipe and steps on how to whip up this fried chicken.

Step 1

In a mixing bowl or glass container, place 5 sprigs of fresh thyme. A little trick to release and open up the flavor of thyme is to smack it with your hand.

You do this with mint as well as basil. It works the same with thyme.

Next, add a tablespoon of salt, 2 gloves of garlic, 2 teaspoons of mild hot sauce sauce, and finally 2 cups of Coca Cola.

Your brine should look like this:

The brine

Give it a good stir with a spoon, seal it, set it aside, and move on to preparing your chicken.

Step 2

Trim the fat off of your 3 boneless skinless chicken breasts, and then cut them in half. This will yield 6 pieces of chicken. Which is plenty for yourself and anyone you invite over.

With a tenderizer, tenderize you’re chicken. This flattens it, allowing it to be almost completely submerged in oil when it comes time to fry, and opens up the chicken to soak up the marinade better.

Tenderized chicken

Once you have tenderized you’re meat, place all 6 pieces in the marinade and set aside in your refrigerator for 1 – 3 hours.

Honestly, for this to taste as good as it does, let the chicken marinate for 3 hours. It makes a huge difference.

Marinating chicken

Step 3

Now it’s time to put together your seasoned flower mix.

Again in a mixing bowl or glass container, (plate works too) pour 1 cup of all purpose flour and 1 teaspoon of salt. Don’t mix it up just yet. You have some more spices.

All 1/2 teaspoons, add black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, smoked paprika, and cayenne pepper. With your herbs and spices together, give it a mix with a spoon and set it aside until it is time to fry.

Seasoned flour

Step 4

In a frying pan place 1 tbsp of butter and press 2 cloves of garlic. Now when I say press, I mean with a garlic press. If you don’t have one, then you can press them with a knife and then cut them up. But if you have a press, it’ll make life much easier.

Stir the butter and garlic on medium to high heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Once you’ve done that, pour in 1 cup of jasmine rice.

Stir the rice for another 1 – 2 minutes or until it is coated evenly with the garlic butter. When it is, pour in 1 1/2 cups of water or broth. Of the two, I went with broth. Chicken broth. There is more flavor to the rice when it cooks in broth instead of water.

Stir the rice with a spoon and then place a lid over the pan. Let it set for 5 minutes on medium heat. Once your rice starts to thicken, take it of the heat and set aside with the lid on. It will finish cooking while you fry your chicken. Stir occasionally.

Step 5

The final step. The moment you have been waiting for. It’s time to fry your chicken.

Grab your cast iron skillet, and pour in 2 cups of peanut oil set on high heat. Let your oil heat up for 2-3 minutes.

After 3 long hours, grab your chicken out of your fridge and get your seasoned flour.

Coat 2 pieces of chicken with seasoned flour. Give your chicken a squeeze to make sure every nook and cranny is covered.

Squeezing your chicken in the flour also makes for fried chicken with crispy, tasty ruffled pieces of fried batter that are packed with all of the fried, delicious, seasoned flavor.

Once coated, place your pieces of chicken in the heated oil and let fry for 3 – 4 minutes. Having tenderized your chicken, it should be almost completely submerged in oil. If it is not, thats okay. After 3 – 4 minutes is over, flip and let fry for another 3 minutes.

Frying chicken

Once fried, take out your pieces of chicken and place on a paper towel to let the grease drip off.

Repeat this process with the remaining four pieces of chicken.

Step 6

Now it’s time to plate everything up.

On a large dinner plate, or dish of your choosing, spread out your rice evenly across it. Sprinkle some fresh spring onion or herb of your choosing. You can get by with parsley.

Next, take your pieces of chicken and lay them over your bed of rice, sprinkle some more spring onion on top with some salt, and pour some hot sauce over them.

If you don’t want hot sauce over your chicken, you can put it on the side and dunk your pieces in it. Or you can go without all together. It’s your choice.

Once you choose what you want, your finished. Now it’s time to eat.

The final dish should look like this:


I was ecstatic about how this came out. Like I said, I never fried chicken on my own before but when I read this recipe I had to give it a try. It exceeded my expectations. absolutely delicious. And the rice…a perfect touch.

Give this recipe a try, and let me know what you think. Can it be improved? If so, how? Let me know.


Mikes Pizza Palace

Homemade Pizza

Been experimenting with homemade pizza.

The dough is premade, the sauce is jarred in Brooklyn, New York, and the fresh mozzarella is straight from Wisconsin.

Want to use fresh dough soon, but I need to get a pizza tray for it. I bake them over coals on my charcoal grill to give them a nice golden, crispy brown undercarriage; the best way to eat pizza in my opinion.

They turned out pretty damn good. I will definitely make them again. Next time with some fresh meats. Capicola, prosciutto, pepperoni, and some fresh basil.

I’m getting hungry thinking about it.

Life Update 09/26/2021.

I have no complaints.

So needless to say, life is pretty good right now.

Alabama is 4-0 on the season. Roll Tide.

I’m working a lot more. Training at the Y and at the working Houndstooth.

Managed to get back on my shit with training and eating good. So my lifts and a strength are going up.

Both of my fantasy football teams are 2-0. We’ll see where they stand after today.

Family is doing good. Mom is loving Florida. Dad is creating more art. Sister is working and loving her life.

I’m sleeping better.

And fall is here. So yeah. Life is pretty good.

It was a fun Sunday + Life Update

I had fun this past Sunday.

We had our picture day at the bar. All of us employees got together to take pictures for the website and social media.

We took pics, ate some food, drank a little bit, and then went out for more drinks.

It was a really fun Sunday.

The Mexican Firing Squad @ Session Cocktails.

A quick life update: things are pretty lax right now. Work at the bar is slow. I’m actually happy that it is. We all are.

The only downside is that the hours are slow and seem to drag on. Nothing I can’t deal with though.

Personal training has been going really good. I have 5 clients. They’re all doing extremely well.

As for me and my training…I’ve actually slacked off a bit. And I’m pissed about it.

Once I get out of working out, I have a hard time getting back into it. Don’t know why. I just do.

I’m still in a bit of a funk, but I’m working my way out of it.

Everyone gets Carded!

Her ID was a little sus.

Honestly nothing beats working the gate at The Houndstooth.

You get to be the first person people see when they come in, greet them, and set the tone for their night, as well as yours. And capture amazing moments like this.

A girl who graduated came in with her family. She walked up and said “see that old lady with the cane, card her!” I didn’t hesitate, because honestly, from experience working the gate so much, it makes those who are in fact old enough so happy when you do.

The lady’s name was Shirley, and she played along with it so well. She loved it. So much we got this pic. It’s one of my favorite moments working the gate.