In praise of the KFC French Pilon

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Allan
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In praise of the KFC French Pilon

Post by Allan »

I confess, my guilty pleasure is I really like Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC).

Normally, such admissions result in flames flying from the ‘healthier than thou’ brigade, but I don’t care because it tastes really good.

Chicken on its own is deathly dull and only worth eating in a curry or other dish that gives it some flavour. Coat it in breadcrumbs laced with Colonel Sanders secret recipe and cook it in a pressure fryer so it is crunchy and greasy at the same time and the taste is exceptional.

Imageine my surprise when I discovered that the branches of KFC in the PO don’t actually sell their signature fried chicken. We rechristened them KnFC and the F doesn’t stand for fried. It was a source of puzzlement to me that the French would open takeaway restaurants and then choose not to sell the franchise’s only worthwhile product.

Last year they test marketed French Pilons which are essentially big juicy chicken drumsticks made in the traditional KFC way. Yesterday I discovered that these have now been permanently added to their menu. Oh Joy!
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

I only ever ate KFC about four times, about once every few years at 2 or 3 in the morning after Parliamentary proceedings on the Finance Bill. At that time of night it was either KFC or food poisoning from the doner kebab place. My abiding memory is that it was very soggy: perhaps they cooked it well ahead at that time of night. I learnt to settle for food poisoning.

I have been buying excellent tasty chickens for almost thirty years from the same market stall in Normandy (or a few kms away in Picardy on a Sunday): mother and now daughter. I’ve asked before whether there is anyone as good down here: there is an OKish one in the market in PV on Saturday, but no real comparison. Though of course the breasts at either stall wouldn’t get them onto page 3. And their guinea-fowl are nicer.

As I’ve said before here, the mother once paid me the compliment of thinking that I was Belgian. You don’t get that at KFC
Allan
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Post by Allan »

martyn94 wrote:I only ever ate KFC about four times, about once every few years at 2 or 3 in the morning after Parliamentary proceedings on the Finance Bill. At that time of night it was either KFC or food poisoning from the doner kebab place. My abiding memory is that it was very soggy: perhaps they cooked it well ahead at that time of night. I learnt to settle for food poisoning.

I have been buying excellent tasty chickens for almost thirty years from the same market stall in Normandy (or a few kms away in Picardy on a Sunday): mother and now daughter. I’ve asked before whether there is anyone as good down here: there is an OKish one in the market in PV on Saturday, but no real comparison. Though of course the breasts at either stall wouldn’t get them onto page 3. And their guinea-fowl are nicer.

As I’ve said before here, the mother once paid me the compliment of thinking that I was Belgian. You don’t get that at KFC
I'm not sure that a french person calling you a Belgian is actually a compliment. :)

There does seem to be a difference in English and French tastes with regard to chicken. A few years ago we went to the restaurant at the Clos de Paulilles, they have a set menu and they make a big fuss over the chicken, detailing its life story, who raised it and what it was fed on. When it came to eating it however, it tasted like broody hen. That seems to be the story with most French restaurants, they either sell tasteless supreme de poulet or some old boiler that has hen scratching around for too long in the mistaken belief that the increased flavour outweighs the toughness and excess chewy bits.

It's all very well searching out tasty chickens but unless you do something with them, curry or gai pad med mamuang (my favourite Thai dish) for example then it still pretty tasteless.

Back in England, we did a taste test, Morrison's cheapest, our local butcher's free range and Label Anglais who seem to supply most top end restaurants. There was a massive difference between the Morrison's cheapest and the butcher's free range. We all agreed that the Label Anglais was the best, but not by much and at double the price of the butcher's, not really worthwhile.

We haven't bothered searching markets or independent suppliers in France but certainly the most expensive poulets de Bresse don't seem much better than Carrefour's cheapest.

Anyway, if you have only eaten KFC four times then that isn't sufficient to form any sort of dependency.
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

[quote="Allan"]
I'm not sure that a french person calling you a Belgian is actually a compliment. :) [quote]

It is if they are talking about your spoken French, and they’d otherwise think that you were a Brit with an O level, 50 years ago. Incomprehensible, but someone once thought I came from Alsace.
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Kate
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Post by Kate »

Love KFC...though it’s never tasted as good to me in France as it did in the UK. Slightly different re ipes depending on National taste or my taste buds that have matured?
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Gus Morris
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Post by Gus Morris »

Goody

Are we going to have a discussion about the relative merits of In 'n Out Burgers, Chipotle and Taco Bell? Maybe throw in a discussion on Napa Valley wines to conform with the new rules on this forum re food and drink topics.

Gus
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »


Allan
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Post by Allan »

Gus Morris wrote:Goody

Are we going to have a discussion about the relative merits of In 'n Out Burgers, Chipotle and Taco Bell? Maybe throw in a discussion on Napa Valley wines to conform with the new rules on this forum re food and drink topics.

Gus
Do you have a point to make? If so what is it?
Allan
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Post by Allan »

martyn94 wrote: Just to bring it back on-topic, can anyone point me to a convenient source of raw cashew nuts?
Have you tried L'Epicerie de detail Sala in rue Paratilla Perpignan. An absolutely brilliant shop who seem to stock every ingredient known to man.

We buy delicious fresh Medjool dates from them which are terrific.

0468 510375
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

Allan wrote:
martyn94 wrote: Just to bring it back on-topic, can anyone point me to a convenient source of raw cashew nuts?
Have you tried L'Epicerie de detail Sala in rue Paratilla Perpignan. An absolutely brilliant shop who seem to stock every ingredient known to man.
In which case, there are lots of other things I need. But worth it for the dates even if they don’t have the nuts.

That’s your starter for ten, as they say (or said) on University Challenge. Do they have Bombay duck?
Richard and Sharon
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Post by Richard and Sharon »

I must warn you against the KFC in Brno, probably the greasiest food I ever ate, but nothing else was open at 9pm on a Sunday evening. My ex business partner adored KFC and used to "treat me" on the way back south on the M6 from the Standish operation", I've welcomed it then, after a 18 hour day.
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »


martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

Richard and Sharon wrote:I must warn you against the KFC in Brno, probably the greasiest food I ever ate, but nothing else was open at 9pm on a Sunday evening. My ex business partner adored KFC and used to "treat me" on the way back south on the M6 from the Standish operation", I've welcomed it then, after a 18 hour day.
I think KFC is something you only eat out of desperation. But how desperate do you have to be for McDos?
Allan
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Post by Allan »

martyn94 wrote: I think KFC is something you only eat out of desperation.
Says he who admits to only having eaten it 4 times and who has never tried the culinary masterpiece of the 'French Pilon'. Look in 'Ma Cuisine' by the famous Auguste Escoffier, he has a recipe for fried chicken that is very similar - but not as good.

Sometimes when you are hungry, tired or just can't be bothered, it is nice to buy a meal that someone else has cooked and eat it in the comfort of your own home.
martyn94 wrote:But how desperate do you have to be for McDos?
Clearly not very, France is now McDonalds largest market outside the US.

One of the things that I miss about England is the ready availability of takeaway food, we lived in a rural setting yet within a few miles had access to fish & chips, great Chinese food, excellent curries, pizzas and all the fast food chains.

Here, other than the big chains it is largely pizza which is pretty well the same boring offering wherever you go. There are a couple of poor Indian takeaways in Perpignan and of course you can load up a container of mush from the Chinese buffets - but who wants to do that.
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

Certainly you sometimes just want fuel, ideally cheap and as palatable as you can find. But the delivery-from-restaurants thing is a complete mystery to me - for years in Australia and latterly in the UK, and now here, apparently. Who’d pay (good) restaurant prices, plus a delivery charge, and then be your own waiter out of aluminium foil? Lots of people, it seems: I sat outside a bar in Greenwich last year watching an endless stream of Deliveroo riders. Harrumph.
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

[quote="Allan"]

One of the things that I miss about England is the ready availability of takeaway food, we lived in a rural setting yet within a few miles had access to fish & chips, great Chinese food, excellent curries, pizzas and all the fast food chains]/quote]

A chippy in Pittenweem in Fife (crazy name, crazy place, though not really) did haddock and chips “to die forâ€￾. But then they nearly fished them out, an old story. Really fresh haddock has a slightly gluey texture which is unmistakable.
martyn94
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Post by martyn94 »

[quote="Allan"]

One of the things that I miss about England is the ready availability of takeaway food, we lived in a rural setting yet within a few miles had access to fish & chips, great Chinese food, excellent curries, pizzas and all the fast food chains]/quote]

A chippy in Pittenweem in Fife (crazy name, crazy place, though not really) did haddock and chips “to die forâ€￾. But then they nearly fished them out, an old story. Really fresh haddock has a slightly gluey texture which is unmistakable.
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