Everything about this meal says "Friday night in front of the TV". It's unexpectedly low-effort, it's fried, it's mostly finger food and the bit that isn't finger food came ready-made from the supermarket. Lovely. And perfect for I Heart Cooking Club's Suitable for the screen theme. Which was timely, because we have recently acquired a TV for the first time in ten years. Supper in front of it is a pleasant novelty at the moment! We haven't got it completely set up yet, so we've mostly been watching DVDs and catching up with the Disney back catalogue. Undemanding entertainment.
Diana Henry's recipe is very straightforward - you just sit your chicken pieces in seasoned buttermilk for the day, dredge it heavily in seasoned flour and fry it until it is crunchy and gorgeous.
I used celery salt and garlic powder instead of the garlic salt and added a good slosh of home made smoked chilli sauce instead of the tabasco.
My most significant variation, though, was using Laurie Colwin's method for frying the chicken. Since trying it for Cook The Books club back in 2012, it really has been my preferred way to fry chicken. It uses less oil, and because you crowd the pan you can get it done in fewer batches. If you were doing a full 12 pieces you'd probably need two batches, but I was able to get all my chicken done at once. Much less effort. And because the pan is covered (which sounds scary and counter-intuitive but it works. Although I still wouldn't leave it unsupervised), your hair doesn't end up smelling like Chicken Cottage. Wins all around.
The chicken was so good: succulent and well-flavoured inside, crunchy outside. I thought the recipe was being slightly ungenerous, only allowing two pieces of chicken per person, but even with our substantial appetites we couldn't manage more than that. The leftovers reheated beautifully in the oven for lunch the following day.
I bought a selection of salads from the supermarket, but obviously home made coleslaw is nicer if you can be bothered.