Monday, April 6, 2009

Chickens and Art: Just another Sunday downtown

Sunday was a great day for me and Kidlo. It started out with a morning trip to Chinatown to pick up two chickens at Superior Poultry (the poultry is superior because it was clucking just a few minutes before you arrive to take it home).

It was my first time buying a chicken in Chinatown so I was a little nervous, but it couldn't have been easier. At some live poultry places, you come eye to beady eye with dinner before it's dispatched, but at Superior Poultry, the chickens were already bagged when I got there. That doesn't mean the chickens weren't fresh, though--in the picture below, you can see the chicken cleaning going on in the back of the store.

The chickens were $8.50 each, which is a great price for a whole chicken (and I do mean the whole chicken--more on that later).

On the same block as Superior Chicken were two live seafood places. They both had catfish, tilapia and lobster in huge tanks.

One place also had a big softshelled turtle and a tank full of huge frogs. I tried to get a photo, but the owner gave me the stink-eye, which makes me think that maybe dinner was being served off the endangered species list.

After we went home and Kidlo had a little nap, we were off to MOCA for their First Sundays are for Families event. It included a free tour (which we had to bail on since Kidlo decided modern art is booooring) and a chance to make your own art (Kidlo gave that part the thumbs up).

It was hot...really hot. But MB was kind enough to drive us to the museum so that I didn't have to push Kidlo's stroller up Bunker Hill (note to City: open Angel's Flight already, will ya?). The walk home was nice, except that I had to keep a death grip on Kidlo's stroller so that it didn't go careening down Grand Street.

Today, after letting the chickens sit in the fridge for a day to let the rigor mortis subside (I am so not kidding), I pulled one of the birds out of the fridge in order to brine it for roasting tomorrow. Now the thing is, I know that Chinese cuisine makes use of every part of the bird, so seeing the feet was no surprise.

But for some reason, the head scared the hell out of me. (You can't see it in the photo, but underneath the chicken's beak is a very neatly slit vein. Gulp.)

Sawing off the head and feet turned out to be easier than I expected. And the chicken smells wonderful. It doesn't have that slightly rancid smell that supermarket chicken can have. It's just very clean, very fresh. I'll update you tomorrow on how it tastes. If it's as good as the smell, I know where I'll be getting my chickens from now on.


Judi Love said...

I am so glad you posted this! Hubby is DYING to get our chickens here.

Anonymous said...

Yikes - that looks scary. Is the chicken already gutted or do you have to do that?

Li said...

Chicken was super-clean, no pin feathers or anything... Giblets are included but separate.