Farm Camp: part 3, cooking+eating a chicken

[A continuation from yesterday’s post]

At the end of two full days of touring farms in Washington County, I was dropped off at the Amtrak station in Albany along with three other Farm Campers. We filed into the station, each of us carrying an overnight bag as well as a silver “Keep Cold” insulated tote which held our chicken. Groggy all, we caught up with messages on our phones (there hadn’t been a mobile signal upstate) while we waited for our train back to the city.

I roasted the chicken the night after, or maybe it was the night after that. Some friends came over to partake in the mid-week chicken fest, gamely listening to the story behind the dinner. I rubbed the chicken with salt and pepper and olive oil and a bit of garlic and herbs and roasted it. I threw a pan of chopped sweet potatoes and white potatoes in the oven at the same time. I made a green salad with shredded carrots and slivered Japanese salad turnips. Brought out some of the whole wheat bread I made the week before. And as we sat down to eat, I put an apple-pear crisp in the oven to bake while we were at the table.

One of my friends noted that it tasted like turkey, in its dark, succulent meatiness. It tasted great, this birdy. I ate some of the leftover meat the day after. And a few days after that I threw the carcass in a huge pot with some aromatics and water to cover and made a broth. After it was done and I’d strained out all the bones, I added some roughly chopped potatoes (both white and purple), some shredded chicken meat and collard greens I’d cut into chiffonade. Chicken vegetable soup. This soup was so rich that when I removed some of the leftovers from the fridge the next day, it had thickened into a golden gelee. This one little 3.5 lb. bird created five or six meals.

 Today I happened to pass through the Greenmarket at Union Square and stopped to say hello to Ben Shaw of Garden Spices Farm (I mentioned both him and his son in yesterday’s post about killing the chicken). He sells poultry from his farm – ducks, chickens and turkeys – as well as eggs and chicken liver pate. Also duck eggs! I bought some today, looking forward to trying them!

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5 Responses to Farm Camp: part 3, cooking+eating a chicken

  1. Pingback: Duck Egg | eat+art+word

  2. marielynn says:

    That was a great story.

  3. Charlie Berg says:

    Son – I still remember going with my grandmother to the poultry store on S. 4th St. in the middle of the Jewish market in Philly, and watching them chop off the bird’s head (no koshering here!), and then having the bird run around on the store’s warped wooden floor without a head. It really happens!

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