Reality TV has been a lot of fun lately. Shock developments, scandals, threats, petty fights, claims of unseemly behaviour with women-not-your-wife… Such interesting characters with such interesting names. Names like Reince. Reince Priebus. I am of course talking about the American presidential election. Our boy Reince is the incoming White House chief of staff. Now I may not care much for the man’s politics and even less for that of his new boss, The Great Orange One. But you have to admit the chap has an intriguing name. With a moniker like that he could be a PI, a veritable modern-day Dick Tracy. So if things don’t work out for him in the big house and TGOO shows him the pointy “you’re fired” finger, Reince honey, think PI.
Given my current (admittedly morbid) fascination with all things American, I figured I might as well explore their food a bit too. I’ve always liked the sound of Southern Fried Chicken. Now generally I steer well clear of deep fried food, but as an occasional treat it’s not going to do damage. I did some research and read loads of recipes.
Jamie Oliver first brines his chicken overnight. I’m no kitchen slouch but honestly, the only thing I’ll ever go to the trouble of brining is a big fat turkey maybe, certainly not a sodding drumstick. Some Southern Fried Chicken recipes marinate the chicken pieces in buttermilk, which sounded intriguing. It ostensibly softens the meat, ensuring that it is juicy plump. So I did just that, and left it in the fridge in its buttermilk bath for eight hours.
The end result was not noticeably plumper or juicier than any other chicken piece I’ve cooked. And let’s face it, Southern Fried Chicken is meant to be quick impulse food, the home alternative to hitting the Kentucky drive-through. So buttermilk got the boot too. All the other good things stayed – plenty of herbs, spices and what the Americans quaintly call hot sauce. To give it extra crunch I also added, unusually, another American icon – Kellogg’s corn flakes.