It’s interesting how words can change the taste of food. An astonishingly awful lot of people react negatively not as much to the taste of a dish but to its name. Semolina, even as an ingredient of pizza dough, will never gain popularity and I don’t see it becoming the new quinoa. Cabbage is only interesting when called kimchi or used in the same sentence as fermenting.
‘Boiled’ is a no-no. Eggs are the only acceptably boiled foodstuffs, probably because there’s no way of euphemising the process in the case of eggs. Otherwise you will find ‘blanched’, ‘poached’, ‘lightly cooked’ or just ‘cooked’; all describing things that are plainly plunged in a pot of water over 100C hot and left to bob about there for a while.
Frying is another such word, hence all the semantic weirdoes like pan roasting, searing, browning, cooking in a skillet and so on. But here’s the next bit of word magic: ‘crispy’ works wonders for whatever it will choose to describe. Crispy cabbage - see? A completely different league than boiled cabbage. The word has the power to cancel out negative connotations. Even though unable to do much for ‘boiled’, for obvious reasons, the ‘crispy fried’ is a winning combination.
I suspect that ‘fried chicken’ would stand alone well, ‘chicken’ being one more magic word that seems to always win everyone – God knows why as it’s usually bland as drizzle. But since ‘fried chicken’ sounds like the great southern classic dish which incidentally is deep fried, I’ll settle on ‘crispy fried chicken’.
Now test this soundbite: ‘flattened poultry cutlet breaded and fried in oil’? And then say ‘crispy fried chicken’? There – I rest my case.