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Quick-brined fried polenta chicken

Yes, this is a fry-fest. And, no, there won't be a Heart Foundation tick of approval. But serving it with a crisp and tangy coleslaw must be a positive, right? Start this recipe at least four hours ahead.

You'll need

2½ tbsp sea salt 1 chicken, cut into 8 pieces on the bone 200 ml buttermilk, well shaken 150 ml hot sauce, plus extra to serve 100 gm coarse polenta 100 gm (2/3 cup) self-raising flour ½ tsp smoked paprika, plus extra to serve Pinch of cayenne ½ tsp dried thyme Vegetable oil or lard, for shallow-frying Thinly sliced spring onion and coleslaw, to serve


  • 01
  • Stir salt and 1 litre water in a saucepan over medium-high heat until salt dissolves, set aside to cool, then refrigerate until chilled. Add chicken, ensuring pieces are completely submerged and refrigerate to brine for at least 2 hours.
  • 02
  • Stir buttermilk and hot sauce in a bowl to combine, drain chicken well, add to bowl, mix to coat well, cover and refrigerate for 2 hours.
  • 03
  • Combine polenta, flour, spices and dried thyme in a large plastic snap-lock bag and season to taste with salt. Drain chicken from buttermilk, shake off excess and, working with a couple of pieces at a time, add to bag, seal and shake to coat well. Heat 3cm oil in a large deep frying pan over medium heat until just shimmering, then shallow-fry chicken, turning occasionally, until golden brown (10-12 minutes). Drain on paper towels, season to taste, scatter with spring onion and extra paprika, and serve hot with hot sauce and coleslaw.

At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 4 people

Drink Suggestion

Orange wine such as skin-contact viognier.

Featured in

Jun 2016

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