On sweltering days in summer, the mind is filled with images of ice-cream cones or frosted mugs of chilled beer. On wintry days, however, when the snow is thick on the ground and the wind is gusting, I think of nothing so much as piping hot roast chicken fresh from the oven. Last Saturday was one of those days. The temperature was in the teens and predicted to drop below zero ( Farenheit) and the wind was blowing hard , raising little puffs of snow from what had already fallen. My wife and I both thought the same thing: Wouldn’t it be wonderful to have some roast chicken?
We didn’t have a whole chicken in the fridge and Costco was too far away so I swaddled myself in my winter clothes and heavy boots and drove to the nearby Shoprite. Just like Costco, they sell whole roast chickens for $ 4.99. Unfortunately, that’s where the similarities end. Shoprite’s roast chicken is smaller, the skin is limp and the meat itself has a different texture. Not juicy and bursting with flavor; just blah. If only
Costco were closer…
Costco’s roast chicken has to be the best value for the money of all its wares. At $ 4.99 a whole bird , it is a real steal and I don’t know how they can sell it so cheap.(It must be a loss-leader.) The skin is the right balance between juicy and crispy, the meat is firm and juicy and it is large enough for two meals for the two of us. After we have had our fill of it, we strip the remaining meat from the bones, chop it up and cook with onions and one of a number of sauces to make sandwiches. The bones we boil in canned chicken stock and make a Chinese style Cream Corn and Chicken soup. Delicious, particularly when it is cold out. We have an accompaniment of sliced green chillies and scallions in a mixture of rice vinegar and soy sauce.
Winter has its advantages.
P.S The New York Times cooking section has a recipe for Andrew Zimmern’s Peruvian Roast chicken. It looks like a winner and I’m going to try it out soon.