Stay Abreast Of The Situation
**The title will make sense as you read . . . then when you get it, you will realize how corny my jokes are . . . **
My 5am Sunday wake up calls are brutal, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel . . . Literally!
When I get to the train station around 6am it’s usually pitch dark so you can imagine how happy I was to see the sun just starting to peak out. Every minute it got brighter and brighter. Maybe it’s not a big deal to anyone else, but it was a very comforting sight.
This Sunday we spent learning about recipe writing and poultry. I want to do a separate post on recipe writing because I some interesting information about plagiarism that relates to all of us food bloggers.
But, for now . . . Let’s talk about Chicken . . .
Lately, my disinterest in buying commercial meats has gone way up. Commercial meat is dirty. It is full of chemicals including antibiotics, pesticides, hormones and who knows what else. The animals are also raised in horrid conditions that I’m sure all of you have an idea about. Whether your a vegetarian or not, I believe no living creature should be treated horribly whether it’s going to become your dinner or not.
Luckily, more and more people are paying attention to this same important issue for many reasons such as the above. This has lead to more farmers raising meat humanely, sustainably and free of chemicals and hormones. As we demand better food for ourselves, it will become more readily available which will drive the price down so everyone can feed themselves real TRUE food.
The power is in what we spend our MONEY on!!
With that said, there is no reason that anyone should really be buying commercial meat in any case. To semi-quote our instructor Chef Jay Weinstein . . .
"It is better to spend the money on a good chicken and have it once a week than spend less money for poor sick meat and have it 4 times a week"
I couldn’t agree more and for now on, If I can help it . . . That’s what ill do.
So what should we look for when we look for chicken?
Two Things . . .
1. Organic Chicken
2. Free Range Chicken
Let me make this clear that the best choice is to look for BOTH meaning organic free range chicken.
Why? Because although organic chicken is raised without any chemicals and hormones, it still is most likely kept in a pen and unable to move about. This makes a sad life for a chicken. But more over for the eater . . . It makes for a chicken that simply doesn’t have any flavor and is void of nutrients.
A chicken that can roam about eating grass will develop a better taste because it gets to develop naturally and also because it is eating food (grass) that it was meant to eat. The vitamins and nutrients (such as naturally occurring Vitamin D) all make it a better and healthier meal for you. And just maybe . . . just maybe they taste better because they have a happier life than it’s dirty commercially raised cousins . . .
. . . . Something to think about.
We learned today how to butcher a chicken which was helpful because I was clueless about it last time I had a whole chicken to cook. It’s pretty simple once you get the hang of where all the joints and bones are and of course when you practice.
The class then got to work on feast of different chicken dishes.
I roasted half my chicken in the oven with a mirepoix (carrots celery onion)
And the other half was pan roasted and made with a mushroom marsala sauce.
Some of the other dishes . . .
I got to bring home a bunch of organic free range chicken leftovers that I can use for meals this week
Oh and do you get the joke now? . . . heh