With several of the city’s best fried chicken options already present in Cambridge’s Kendall Square (not to mention a few more in nearby Central and Inman squares), the neighborhood could get even more excellent fried chicken next year — albeit prepared in a different way.
Chef Chris Parsons — notable for his now-defunct Winchester restaurants Catch and Parsons Table — is planning to open a fried chicken joint called Lily P’s, named for his 13-year-old daughter, in the Genzyme headquarters (50 Binney St., Cambridge) in Kendall Square. But Parsons — who was also opening chef and a partner at Steel & Rye, a popular Milton restaurant in which he is no longer involved — isn’t planning to cook fried chicken any old way. He’s planning on pressure-frying it.
Pressure-frying is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: using a pressure cooker to fry food. It’s probably not the best idea to try this method with your stovetop pressure cooker; pressure-frying is a job for commercial kitchens with commercial-grade pressure cookers. Kentucky Fried Chicken, for example, pressure-fries its chicken. You, most likely, should not.
Parsons told Boston Magazine that pressure-frying his birds, which will be buttermilk-brined, will result in a “crispier, juicier product,” and they’ll be available in multiple styles, including Memphis hot.
Diners can also expect various other Southern-inspired snacks like biscuits and pickles, plus a raw bar, as well as a deep selection of local and international beers and ciders on tap. The restaurant will be large, accommodating 200, and will feature a patio and live music.
Lily P’s could open sometime between the winter and spring of 2019. In the meantime, Kendall Square folks can get their fried chicken fill with the Korean fried chicken sandwich at the Automatic (50 Hampshire St., Cambridge), the Nashville hot or Tabasco honey fried chicken at State Park (1 Kendall Sq., Cambridge), the fried chicken sandwich or basket at the Smoke Shop (1 Kendall Sq., Cambridge), or a variety of fried chicken options at Commonwealth’s Sunday pop-up, Ducky’s Fried Chicken (11 Broad Canal Way, Cambridge).