This blog is a place to share my passion for cooking and inspire people to cook more from scratch. With six people in the family, cooking is something that is always on my mind. I want to share some of my favorite foods and recipes and share more about traditional diets (like the kind of food our great, great, great grandmothers would have made). Right now I am fascinated with fermented vegetables, coconuts, seafood with a cerviche twist and organ meats... although maybe not all in the same meal!

Thursday, October 6, 2011

On my way to Turducken!


The fun at culinary school just keeps on coming!  This week we made Chicken BRT which apparently is Boned, Rolled and Tied.  (Since we are de-boning the chicken to do this I wonder why it is not a DRT... but I digress!) 

While I still have to work on my deboning skills a bit more, I think I am getting the hang of the idea.  It really is kind of a distant cousin to the Turducken of sorts as that's what you are doing with the duck/chicken/turkey is deboning them all and then stuffing one inside the other.  I don't think I am ready for that yet, but I see endless flavor combinations to the Chicken BRT.  I made the same pear, spinach and onion mix at home that we made in our farm to table class last night.  Here's what our class meal looked like:

I was so pleased with myself for essentially getting the idea down at home today as I totally messed up my chicken cutting last night and ended up with chicken breasts!  You basically start with a whole chicken:  

You have to start at the center and then find one of the breast bones and gently pull the breast away from the bone using a boning knife.  Repeat on both sides being careful not to cut into the skin below.  Then you have to slit the legs and carefully remove the bones while keeping the legs and skin attached to the chicken.

When done you have a flat surface that looks something like this... I am sure better butchers would have a prettier display but most of all just make sure you get all the bones out!  Then you place the stuffing mixture which in this case was saute'ed pears, onions and spinach.  

Then you roll it all up like this:

 You have to use kitchen string to keep it all together.  You can see a little tear where I cut through the skin and some of the spinach/pear/onion mix is showing through!  Then you bake at 450 degrees until you reach an internal temp of 165 degrees which will probably take between 45 min to 1 hr.  

Out of the oven it looked like this:

The tender juices were amazing inside the chicken.  The stuffing really helped keep everything moist!  Here's a photo again of the finished slice:

And then because nothing should go to waste, take the bones and make stock!  So you get the building blocks for two meals out of the one chicken!  Maybe by Thanksgiving I'll be good enough to tackle the Turducken!

Also posted at:
Kelly the Kitchen Kop's Real Food Wednesday