Last night, my boyfriend said something that was stupid. “We didn’t need to order this much fried chicken,” he said, stupidly.
Excuse me sir, how dare you.
Much like pizza, one does not simply order (or make) the amount of fried chicken they plan to consume that evening. To do so would be short-sighted, foolish, and — as I have already covered — stupid. Ordering a single meal’s worth of fried chicken deprives one of cold fried chicken, and cold fried chicken tastes good. Ordering what society tells us is “too much fried chicken” is responsible meal planning, actually.
Cold fried chicken is delicious. Unlike other previously hot-but-now-cold fried foods, such as french fries, fried chicken keeps its crunch. The grease congeals, forming a thin layer of what I like to call “chicken butter,” and the seasonings shine more brightly once they’re no longer battling hot grease for room on the palate. It would not be hyperbolic to say that I prefer cold fried chicken to fresh hot chicken (though it would admittedly be a close call).
Cold fried chicken makes the best, most interesting chicken salad, but it’s also the ultimate lunchbox protein as-is, without any tweaks or additions. Just toss it in a lunchbox or bag. Done. Even if it warms up slightly and becomes room-temperature fried chicken, it’s still good. No, it’s great.
It’s also a good meal (or snack) for those moments when your body cries out for something substantial but satisfying in the middle of the day, when you are very busy and unable to cook. It feels fun, and a little decadent, and who doesn’t need a little midday decadence?
Please understand that when I say “fried chicken,” I’m talking about bone-in pieces of chicken, not nuggets (which can be hit or miss once they cool) or tenders (which can be ok, actually, depending on who makes them, but not as good). I have always thought that meat tastes better right off the bone, but in this case it’s just more practical. Bone-in chicken is easier to hold while you go about your day — for what are bones but nature’s meat handle? (Did I water my vegetable garden this morning with a piece of fried chicken in my non-dominant hand? Yes, and I’d do it again!)
So orderly robustly, order greedily, order too much fried chicken, then put the “leftovers” in the fridge. It may feel decadent, but it counts as meal planning, and meal planning is always responsible.
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