Friday, 12 March 2010

Wet wet wet

It started the day after I went to Adelaide an hasn't really stopped since - 357mm and more on the way. Just got the garden restablished and now all the tomatoes have root rot and the zucchinis have turned to mush dammit. Corn is doing well though. I have two beds planted out which will finish my first home reared crop of meat birds. Corn fed, hand fed mouthwatering little feasts they will be too. Possibly the most expensive chicken in the history of poultry production, but I know exactly what they have eaten, and they will be delicious.

I guess it's why a roast chook was such a special occasion dish when I was a child - mum had chooks in the back yard when I was young, so did my grandmothers. I take rediculous pleasure in saving the best leftovers for them partly becasue it is going to be recycled into future food, rather turning green at the back of the fridge, but mostly becasue I could spend hours watching them chase eath other round the pen after the tastiest morsels. Chicken tag.

It is also pretty funny to wathc the young males size each other up and cockfight. Becasue they are all brothers, they don't actually kill each other, but if they were in a pen with other unrecognisable cockerels they would.

One is already named Picasso, becasue that is what he will become - chicken picasso, however I am looking for fabulous chook recipies for which to name the others.

Suggestions welcome.


  1. Chicken Cacciatori:
    Eeenie, meenie,miny moe
    Catch a Tory by the toe
    if he's tough
    cook him slow

  2. I'll offer myself as a taste tester.
    Like home grown tomatoes, home reared chooks taste so much better than the industrial shmeg we get in the (not so) supermarket.

  3. I can't think of any inspired names but I can put in a good word for the Tupperware season serve marinade box - which is totally spill proof, and has this little grid system on the base which means that the marinade seeps all the way in. And which has produced some marvelous meals.

    I'm a big fan of Nigella Lawson's butterfly chicken recipes - she does them in glad type snap lock bags, (I got sick of them exploding and coating the fridge in muck, hence my love of tupperware) she just chucks them in the fridge for a few days, slices Ms Chicky up the backbone and roasts.

    I've done a few variations on this.

    Lemon Ginger chicken Marinade
    -3 cloves crushed garlic
    1 inch grated ginger root
    1 tablespoon honey
    1 tablespoon soy sauce
    juice of one lemon
    grated zest of one lemon
    1/3 cup olive oil

    Shake it all up, toss over chicken, marinate overnight. 24 hours, with a few turns of the marinade box, seems to be ideal.

    Butterfly, pour marinade into sauce bowl, paint liberally onto chicken. (sitting on a greased tray of course)
    Roast at 180C for one and a quarter hours, or 90 minutes if need be.
    Baste with marinade at 30 minute intervals, the browning juices are particularly good to apply to the skin as it helps to crispy it up.

    Lime and lemongrass chicken marinade
    -zest of one lime
    -juice of one lime
    -1 diced shoot of lemongrass (about 25cm or so)
    -2 diced shallots
    -1/3 cup sesame oil
    -1 inch of grated ginger
    -1 teaspoon of soy sauce
    -1 teaspoon of brown sugar
    - 1 tablespoon of Sweet Chilli Sauce (I use the Ozganics preservative free one from Mrs. Flanneries)

    This last recipe is something I've only used for stir-fry chicken, which I toss on top of salads in summer. Its beautifully light, and you can add coriander if you want to spice it up a bit more.
    I'm sure it would work as a roast marinade, though.