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Bowel clenchin’ good fried chicken

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The CP chicken stall outside a VIP Minimart in Phnom Penh. Photograph: Reuters

Fried chicken does not taste of spices or meat – any lingering trace of flavour has long since been burned away. No need to mention vitamins, unsaturated fatty acids or micronutrients. It contains MSG and oozes with fat. Eating it can give you kidney stones, acne, clogged arteries and heart disease.

But who cares? There are many things one should not do and some situations where doing them is absolutely necessary.

Picture yourself on your sofa on Sunday night. You have been out Friday and Saturday night. The TV is running and you are alone. Someone you met the night before left a few hours ago. The taste and furry feeling in your mouth reminds you of a dead cat.

The body is completely off-kilter. Your inner monologue ridicules you for trying to subsist on a diet of beer, vodka red bulls, cigarettes, gin and tonics and flaming sambuca shots for the entire weekend.

Lolling miserably on the sofa, you hear that call, stronger than the feelings of guilt and phlegm that keep you pinned to the couch. It makes you get dressed, search the pockets of yesterday’s stinky jeans for a few rumpled dollar bills and schlep to the tuk-tuk. It drops you at the CP fried chicken stall beside Sothearos Boulevard’s VIP Market. How much more can fried chicken harm you after that kind of weekend?

You bring home a plastic bag of golden-brown, hot, crispy wings and legs of CP fried chicken.

It comes with a few napkins and sweet chilli sauce and is best eaten by hand. It’s the best in town: crispier, greasier, juicier and deadlier than all other fried chicken on offer.

CP seems to understand people’s cravings for salt, fat and gluttony after a rough weekend or whenever else a heart-hardening pick-me-up is warranted.

It’s the last treat before you fall into a deep food coma that makes you forget all the sins of the weekend - until you wake up and remember where you have to be on Monday morning.

CP Fried Chicken stall
No. 43E0, Sothearos Boulevard, Phnom Penh

 

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