BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) – The first full week of July began with fireworks as the nation celebrated Independence Day, and the arrival of the middle of the week brought a new celebration.

Wednesday, July 6 has been set aside to honor a food so crispy, tender, and delightfully crunchy that it is consumed with surprising frequency despite its high calories and unhealthy fats.

Fried chicken is synonymous with American cooking and it’s honored on the aforementioned date.

How much fried chicken do Americans eat?

One report claims that in 2020, approximately 78.98 million Americans consumed frozen fried chicken, and another survey states that 49% of U.S. residents eat fried chicken at least once a week.

Origins of fried chicken

How did the beloved dish make its way to the U.S.?

While most historians acknowledge that cultures in both West Africa and Scotland made fried chicken, many agree that the Scottish version had the heaviest influence on America’s version of the dish.

A BBC News article on the subject states, “West Africans didn’t make fried chicken the same way many Southerners traditionally did. It was more like a fricassee, where chicken was lightly fried and then braised for a much longer time in a seasoned sauce – similar to Senegalese chicken yassa.”

On the other hand, it was the Scottish that had the unique tradition of deep-frying their chickens in fat, and it is believed they brought the recipe with them upon immigrating to the U.S.

These days, there are a variety of ways to enjoy fried chicken, from a fried chicken biscuit to a side of crispy chicken stix, it’s all on America’s menu.

And on National Fried Chicken Day, foodies are encouraged to indulge in their favorite version by feasting on it at a restaurant, picnic, or at home.