With spring just around the corner we felt it was appropriate to celebrate a family favorite - Chicken! Until about a year ago, I don't think I fully appreciated good chicken. I learned from a chef that the only chicken worth eating was a free range chicken. These are chickens that are raised unconfined (by current definition, a minimum pen size of 3 feet x 3 feet). Typically they are also not injected with preservatives to increase the shelf life (although that doesn't define a "free range chicken"). Who would think that would have a significant difference in taste and texture? Trust me it does. Now every time I cook any other type of chicken my husband comments on how it tastes as if it has been injected with bleach. Free range chickens are available at some major grocery stores and at most butchers. So, the next time you are looking at having chicken for dinner, give a free range bird a try - you will never go back.
As we all know chicken is a very versatile meat, both in preparation and cooking technique. This month we focused on a variety of different chicken dishes - most are quick and easy meals to prepare. For an Italian flavor try Chicken with Peppers & Raisins or Peppered Chicken Piccata. If you are looking for a quick meal to throw together after work try these Asian dishes - Sichuan Chicken with Peanuts, Ginger Peanut Chicken Salad, Curried Chicken and Rice or Chicken Broccoli & Cashew Stir Fry.