Organic vs Steroid Antibiotic Chicken
Organic Chicken is Steroid and Antibiotic Free. The pieces are usually smaller and contain less fat. Organic Chicken is being used more and more in BBQ Competition because it has to be prepped a lot less. These pieces are smaller and produce less finished product but in competition you probably get one bite. If you planning a party it will take more organic chicken at a higher price but the transfer of steroids and antibiotics is a real event in regular mass grown chicken. Some organic chicken can be as high as 4.99 a pound.
Mass Produced Chicken – its grown in 6-12 weeks. We used to own a couple 14,000 chicken – chicken houses. Its a fast moving process. It has fed our nation for 100 years. Mass Produced Chicken gives you bigger pieces and a expected product. The skin may have as much as 1/4 of an inch of fat on it. Cooks are starting to believe they can crank up that heat and cook that fat off rather than scrapping it. The event of passing steroids and antibiotics to the general population is real. Generations are getting bigger every year and I have to point to this as a major source. That being said, if you have 5 or more guest coming over or a huge catering, mass produced is the way to go. Lower Price more product, more bang for the buck. Some mass produced chicken is better than others. Each local grocery store probably has a different chicken packing plant they are buying from. No grocery chain owns a chicken packing plant I know of sooo.. If it has their name on it finding out what company packed it is a little bit harder.
Drum Sticks are the cheapest piece of meat on a chicken. Chicken Legs are becoming more popular on the competition circuit. The way you decide on a drum stick is the knuckles at each end.
When the drum stick is cut away from the thigh you want to make sure its a clean surface. The skin is an issue too. Make sure they have plenty of skin to cover the leg. If the skin is to short to cover the main head of chicken leg it can let the bone-ney parts start sticking out as the cooking process goes along and the meat will ball up toward the top during the cooking process.
Thighs – When a leg quarter is bought and you cut the thigh away from a drum stick your left with a piece of the spine left on the thigh. If you buy just thighs that will be removed. You can save $.50 a pound separating them both for a party but you’ll have that extra bone. If you want professional looking thighs for your dinner buy thighs and the bone will already be removed. If you buy just thighs take a look at how they are shaped. Some companies will have triangles instead of square pillows. Some thigh in mass produced chicken will have really thick shin, The thigh is where fat is deposited. Decide if you want to contend with all that extra fat by taking a good look at the thigh. Even massed produced thighs can have different content of fat thickness. Publix has some great thighs. That is the standard for mass produced chicken.
Wings – 40 pound box of wins is a lot of wings. South Carolina Barbecue Association passes them out to every team to prep to sell to raise money for charities. Organic Wings are to small in my book. The bigger the wing the better. In the old days people threw wings away. Buffalo New York Changed all that. Andre Bullock actually worked at the original Buffalo Wing Restaurant. Look at the tips of the wings. If the tips are thin and small don’t buy them. You can guess there is not much meat on those wings. If the tips are big a long buy them up. Take a look at the dark meat piece of the wing for feathers. Wings with feathers and feather stubbs are a a mess to clean. Get a big pack. figure every person can eat 6 wings. That is whole wings. Got 4 people buy 24 wings. You might think that is too much but, when the game is on its a lot of fun to be busy eating wings for at least the first half. Cook them till there done. Nothing worse than chicken meat sticking to the joints and not releasing.
You have to decide weather you are going skin or no skin. Bone in or boneless. Bones in chicken ad flavor. Costco carries skinless chicken in portion packs. Tear a pack off and make a meal freeze the rest. Thin skin is great if cooked to bite through. I don’t like a piece of chicken where the whole skin comes off when you bite it. Mass Produced is hard to accomplish this in I’ve got 2 videos 2 hours long each where I accomplished this in 12 pieces of thighs.
Freezing Chicken – Zip Lock Bags. Leave the chicken in its original container but put it in a zip lock bag. Zip Lock has up to 10 gallon bags. That extra layer of lock in will slow down freezer burn and make it taste better when you go to the grill. Any change in the final product before going to the grill can be corrected with a brine. Take out your frozen chicken, let it thaw, get it to room temperature and put it into a brine.