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Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Put the chicken in a bowl and pour over the milk adding the hot sauce if you choose to use it. Season the milk with salt. Tip the flour and spices into a large plastic bag and add a tsp of salt and a good grinding of pepper.
Heat half the oil in a large frying pan. Take half of the chicken out of the milk, shake off any excess and put in the bag of seasoned flour. Hold the top closed and shake well. Lift the pieces out and shake off any excess, but don’t do this too hard or you’ll end up with no coating. Lower the pieces into the oil and fry for a few minutes on each side until golden and crisp – don’t overdo it as the chicken is being baked next and will brown further. Use tongs to turn the chicken and try not to tear the coating. Transfer to a rack set in a roasting tin. Repeat with the rest of the chicken.
Bake for 30 mins until cooked – check one drumstick and one thigh with a skewer – cook for longer if you need to.