The most important thing to do when making fried chicken is to try and keep the oil at a consistent temperature. In our dutch oven, we start to bring the Crisco to 350 degrees. While the shortening is heating, we combine the flour with 2 teaspoons of salt and 1/2 teaspoon of pepper in another gallon size resealable plastic bag. Retrieving the chicken from the fridge, we use tongs to drop a piece of chicken into the flour mixture, seal, and shake to combine.
After removing the coated chicken from the flour mixture, we park it on a plate and continue with each piece of chicken. We fry half the pieces to start, over medium high heat, carefully placing two pieces into the hot shortening with tongs. We cover it partially (the candy thermometer is in the way) and cook for 5 minutes (adjusting the heat as necessary although the temperature will surely go down at first with the cold chicken). We then rearrange the chicken to ensure even browning, cover, and cook for another 5 minutes. At this point, the chicken is nicely browned, maybe too browned since the temperature did go as high as 375 degrees! We flip each piece over and cook over medium heat, uncovered, for an additional 12 minutes.
We remove the pieces to a wire rack set over a cookie sheet and test with a meat thermometer for doneness. The chicken should be at least 170 degrees and we let them rest for about 5 minutes. While we let them rest, we repeat the procedure with the remaining chicken. We are just two for dinner tonight so we dine while we fry the other two pieces of chicken.