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Le Poulet est devine!!!

October 11, 2009

Well, Happy Thanksgiving to all. It's been a tough year, but I think we all have things to be thankful for. This year for me has been very tough, but I have Terry and “that is a good thing”.

Friday night we got the call that our 'bootleg' chicken was ready and that we were to come after 12 Saturday to pick them up. Man, I thought they forgot, so it was off to Comber the next morning. Terry and I had our usual 'discussion' on how to prepare the fowl. Me, I wanted to turn it and she wanted to flatten it and grill it. I won as I stressed that I didn't know how to do a flattened bird and wasn't going to try on one of these special birds. So I won….then she got me with the “do you have enough propane line”. Yes Eadie, I should have just agreed in the first place.

Now to the bird….what a divine creature. We got there at around 1 and saw a wall of birds. They were big!!! I have never seen chickens this big. I guess that when they run around and eat stuff they can get bigger than those supermarket birds. The small ones had already been cherry picked so we got 4 in the 8-9lb range then one biggun. (editor's note: Jim is about to ramble so there may be a few big ones left and after eating last nights here is the contact info so you can see if any are left. Forgive him as he doesn't get out much. T 20300 Lakeshore Rd. 308, RR #1 Comber, Ontario N0P 1J0 519.682.0204 e ). We couldn't fit them all into the cooler so we picked one for dinner and sat it on the floor in the back seat, then we were off for wine. Since we were already in Comber we figured the Smith and Wilson was only a stone's throw away and we like the windmills. They are so beautiful.

Back to the bird. 9 lbs of poultry prettiness. This was no store bird from some poultry factory farm. This guy was a beauty. I made my usual jokes about it being as hormoned up as an East German swimmer and all laughed (editor's note…they were being polite).The family is proud of their product and it shows. The are very nice and have a cool farm dog….he greets then keeps a distance. Nice doggy.

(sorry for the underline as it shouldn't be there and I can't get rid of it…came from the cut and paste…oops)Per our belief that good food doesn't need alot of spice, Terry banned the Herbes de Provence and made me settle for sea salt and pepper. We filled the cavity with onion and celery chunks (leave the skin on the onion…beaucoup de flavor) and more salt. Wood chips were supplied by a pecan tree and provided some smoke during cooking.

So it was off to the bbq. Wine for cooking was Muscedere's Sauvignon Blanc. I love Sauv Blanc and the local ones mirror France more than the new world so that is good. (go see John Carnahan at the Tecumseh lickbo and ask him for the $23 Sancerre…just to see the direction we should go with ours…don't tell him I sent you or else he'll probably try to sell you Retsina). The wine is fresh and big…good choice as it was chilly and I had 2 hrs to go. At T-1.5 hrs Terry joined me with some yum yums and we had a crisis!!! My smoke pouch had caught fire and the wine was out. As the brave strong man I am, I bravely doused the fire with the chip soaking water for pouch #2 after I bravely moved the pouch, then I saved the day by getting a bottle of Sanson's Sauvignon Blanc. What bravery…What control of the moment!!!!

The Sanson was sooooo different. Almost buttery and much more viscous. It was classy and wonderful. Not that the Muscdere was bad…it isn't…its just more rustic in nature. So it turned and we talked then Terry had to go in to finish the sides. Rosemary and shmaltz (chicken fat) mashed potatoes, local squash and local beans…..hey.. we had a 25 mile meal and if we hadn't had the imported wine (Smith and Wilson is in Blenhiem) it would have been a 20 minute meal.

Now the bird just looked different…it was golden and didn't shrink, but gave alot of fat…well it was a big bird…no water just good juice. We let it rest then I carved it…..OH MY GOD!!! it was great…juicy, cut wonderfully, smelled great..the white meat was white and the dark was very dark….that could have been the smoke and the proximity of the leg to the heat. It was beautiful…..1/2 a bird fed the three of us… It was simply beautiful and the Smith and Wilson Sauvignon Blanc was wonderful with it. Just complemented it and made meal better. I probably should have went with a Chardonnay, but this was a good fit.

So is real chicken worth it……YES!!!!! That was simple. When things get to run around and move and are treated with respect they will tastes better. Bag the “Organic” thing and just get good food grown by someone who cares. It may be harder to find these people but I have found several, and am eating better for it. Methinks there may be a few left overs so call them and inquire…they probably will be big but thats ok…we checked with a fruit stand and when they grew chicken 9 pounders are usual and they get bigger.

Richard is cool…he has this belief that he wants to be “your personal farmer”. Cool idea cos he has beef does chicken, grinds his own flour….kinda like our grandparents…..

So I add a 2nd corollary to the Mario Batali theory of life…”get to know your Butcher”

1st corollary…get to know your winemaker

2nd corollary…get to know your farmer

Happy Thanksgiving…I just can't wait to make stock from the carcass!!


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One Comment leave one →
  1. October 12, 2009 5:16 am

    Retsina, hey who doesn't like a good bottle of Pine-Sol once in a while.

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