Buttermilk has 2 flavors, true buttermilk, sometimes called sweet buttermilk is the water extracted from cream during the process of making butter. Cultured buttermilk has been treated like yogurt and allowed to ferment. All recipes that I have encountered, even the old ones, refer to cultured buttermilk which is well because sweet buttermilk is impossible to find unless you make your own butter. The secret of good buttermilk fried chicken is the soak in the buttermilk itself. The acidity helps to tenderize the chicken making it oh so juicy and delicious. The chicken can be pan fried or deep fried but there's no getting around the fact that you need hot oil to cook it. If you have an aversion to fat I can't really give you a low fat recipe for buttermilk chicken as it will not truly be Southern style any longer. My advice is to live your life. Eating fried foods once is awhile isn't going to kill you, eating them every day on the the other hand is not healthy.
Southern Buttermilk Fried Chicken
3lbs Chicken Parts (I like legs and thighs)
2C Organic Buttermilk
1 Onion, Sliced (or 1/2 a large onion)
1/4C Chopped Fresh Parsley
1tsp each Thyme & Savory
1/2 tsp each Cayenne Powder, Celery Seed, Rosemary Powder, Garlic Powder
Mix all together and add chicken, coating well. Soak in refrigerator 8 hours or overnight. Drain chicken in basket, reserving marinade and set aside.
2C Kin Arthur All Purpose Flour
1/2tsp each, Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Salt
Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
Mix all together well with a whisk. Dip chicken in coating then in marinade then coating again making sure to coat well. Set aside while heating some oil in a pan (medium heat) or deep fryer. I would suggest using Peanut Oil or Lard for the frying. When oil is good and hot fry chicken 12-15 mins per side or according to deep fryer directions until golden brown. If using a pot to deep fry simply cook 12-15 mins total or until golden brown. Drain cooked chicken on rack over pan lined with newspaper. Keep warm in oven until needed. For a real Southern treat serve with Collard Greens or Mustard Greens and Spider Cornbread (omit vinegar and use 1C buttermilk instead of fresh milk) along with a nice Apple Pie for dessert.