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Is chicken the most popular meat we eat? It may be. The average American eats 87 broilers each year, more than double the number his grandfather ate 30 years ago. While a simple roasted chicken is the most popular way to prepare chicken, there are hundreds of other ways to cook this widely available food.
Broil it, bake it, fry or saute it. Stuff it, roast it, use it in stir-fry—there are so many ways to prepare it! Hot wings served up with beer and chips is a new American classic. Grandmother’s cornmeal encrusted fried chicken dinner makes for a Sunday meal dear to our hearts. Our mother’s comforting chicken soup helps cure our colds. Chicken plays a key role in American life in so many ways.
Benefits of chicken over other meats:
Usually less expensive
Contains more protein and nutrients
Lower in saturated fats and cholesterol
What kind do you like? Dark chicken or light? The different textures of white and dark meat are one of the marvels of this versatile food. People can choose free range chickens that taste different from commercially raised fowl. But more easily available and affordable, commercial chickens are readily available in a variety of cuts.
Many other cultures feature chicken in their diet. Italians make cacciatora. Japanese cooks prepare miso chicken dishes. Indian and Jamaican cooks make curried chicken, while Spanish cooks make chicken with rice dishes. Explore the world of cooking with chicken—you’ll be surprised at the sheer number of tastes this simple bird produces!
Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff