So, September is national chicken month. In the 40’s there was a fun movie called, “Chicken Every Sunday.” I grew up with chicken every Sunday, and Monday and Tuesday and just about every other day. I was raised on a commercial poultry ranch and we had chicken all the time. I still love it. The 18th century gastronomier, Jean Antheime Brillat-Savarin, “… chicken is to the cook, what a blank canvas is to the painter …”
And chicken is indeed one of the most vestal of all animas to prepare. Few other food can be prepared in recipes from virtually every culture, be served for every meal of the day and be served for every course of a meal – well, I guess I can’t imagine any dessert recipes using chicken, though mind, there might be one out there.
Now, a word about nutrition. Those of you who eat chicken as opposed to beef for health reasons – quit kidding yourself. If you eat critter you are consuming calories, fat and cholesterol and NO fiber, not on teeny-weeny little gram of fiber.
One half a boneless, skinless chicken breast, (and who eats just half a breast) has 140 calories, 28 of them from fat, 74 mg of cholesterol, 99 mg of sodium, 27 grams of protein and a big fat ZERO of fiber.
Compare this to 3 ounces (and who eats just three ounces) of tri-tip which has 158 calories (a bit more but not much), 48 from fat, 76 mg of cholesterol, 56 mg of sodium, 25 g of protein and again absolutely no fiber.
So, if you’re eating chicken over beef for health reasons, don’t bother. Me, I eat chicken because I LOVE it and it’s usually a tad less expensive – and as cook, like Brillat-Savarin, I find it ultimately versatile.
I do find it unfortunate that with modern marketing, the variety of chicken has been greatly reduced. A few decades ago I could still buy a roaster or a fryer or a stewing hen. Today, unless you can find a very special, specialty or ethnic shop, all you can get is just a chicken. Non the less I do love it.
Happy National Chicken Month to you and here’s to good eating.