Beard on Birds

Beard on Birds

3.0 1
by James Beard
     
 

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780446390323
Publisher:
Grand Central Publishing
Publication date:
11/28/1989
Pages:
221

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Beard on Birds


By James Beard

OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA

Copyright © 2001 Reed College
All rights reserved.
ISBN: 978-1-5040-0450-3



CHAPTER 1

Chicken


Chicken Classifications

SQUAB CHICKEN

The youngest of chickens on the market, weighing about a pound, and usually broiled, either split or whole. You will need one per serving. Expensive and hard to find.


CORNISH GAME HEN

Young hens, weighing 1 to 1¾ pounds. You will need one per serving of the smaller birds. Use for roasting, sautéing, or broiling.


BROILERS

These are young birds, weighing 1½ to 2½ pounds, and extremely tender. They should be firmly meated, with a little fat on them. Use for broiling and some sautéing. Sometimes cooked whole, they are generally split in half. In this case, remove the back and neck with poultry shears and press down firmly to flatten the two halves and allow more even cooking. One half-broiler is considered a portion.


FRYERS OR BROILER-FRYERS

These all-purpose birds weigh between 2 and 3½ pounds. They are cooked either split, as is the case with broilers, or cut into smaller serving portions and broiled, sautéed, fried, or braised. Be sure to cut—do not chop—the chicken. Slice between the legs and body through the thigh joint. Cut each leg and thigh in half at the joint. Then cut through the wing joints. Next split the carcass, using poultry shears. The breast can be boned out or left intact and cut into two pieces; or, in the case of a large and meaty chicken, cut into three pieces. Cut the back and rib cage into two or three pieces. (Always include these for people who love to pick bones. I am one.) Thus, you can get as many as twelve pieces from one bird.


ROASTERS

Larger birds ranging from 4 to 6 pounds. They may be used for poaching as well as roasting.


CAPONS

Capons are unsexed male birds whose flesh is tender and delicate. These weigh up to 8 or 9 pounds and should be considered if you are serving more than four people. They are no longer hormone fed, due to government regulations, so you should feel quite safe in using them. More expensive than other chickens.


FOWL

A mature or old hen, used for poaching or for fricassees, and wonderful eating if you can find one. Ranging in weight from 4 to 8 pounds, they are usually well-retired layers. However, they are seldom found in markets nowadays, and the fowl that does appear is, in my opinion, only worthy of being used to make strong broth. Beware of something called a "roasting fowl"; it will never tenderize by roasting.


Sautéed Chicken

Chicken is sautéed as often as it is fried, although people tend to confuse the two terms. The difference lies in the amount of fat used. A small amount is used for sautéing; in frying, the food is well steeped in fat or entirely covered with it.

Buy broilers or small fryers for a sauté. Tiny chickens can be sautéed whole. Larger chickens should be cut in half or in convenient serving pieces. And be sure the giblets are included, for they make a sauté even better.

The prime utensil to use for this form of cookery is an iron skillet or sauté pan, although any heavy pan—cast aluminum, stainless steel, or enamel on iron—can be used. The pan should be equipped with a lid that fits tightly.

Any choice of fats can be used. Clarified butter is the finest, followed by olive oil, peanut oil, and corn oil; margarine gives acceptable results, too; and bacon fat is wonderful, although it brings another flavor into your dish.

To sauté, heat a light film of butter or other fat in the pan. Depending on the amount of chicken being prepared, you will generally need 2 to 5 tablespoons. Brown the chicken on all sides over a brisk flame, then cover and let tenderize over low heat. If you are making a sauce for the dish, remove the pieces of chicken to a hot platter while you prepare it. To rewarm, either return the chicken to the pan and heat with the sauce for a few moments, or keep the chicken warm on a hot platter and pour the sauce over it.


BASIC CHICKEN SAUTÉ
2 broilers or fryers, 2 pounds each
6 tablespoons butter
Flour for dredging (optional)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup dry white wine
3 to 4 tablespoons chopped parsley


Each chicken should be cut into four pieces—two breast halves with the wings attached, and the two legs and thighs with part of the backbone. Wipe the chicken with a damp cloth if you wish.

Sautés should not be overcrowded in the pan. Therefore, since you are preparing two chickens, it might be wise to use two pans, putting the white meat in one and the dark meat in the other, since they require different cooking times.

Melt the butter in one very large heavy skillet or two smaller ones with a tight-fitting lid or lids. Add the chicken pieces and brown them over medium-high heat on all sides. (For a deeper color, flour the chicken first.) Season to taste with salt and pepper, then reduce the heat, cover, and cook very gently for about 5 to 10 minutes. Remove the cover or covers and rearrange the pieces so they will cook evenly. Add ¼ cup wine, recover, and cook 10 minutes more. Uncover and move the pieces of white meat to the top (if using one skillet), leaving the dark meat, which takes longer to cook, on the bottom. Cover and cook until the chicken is just tender and done, but still juicy, about 5 to 10 minutes more.

Remove the chicken pieces to a hot platter. Add the remaining wine and the parsley to the pan or pans, turn up the heat, and boil, scraping up the brown glaze from the bottom with a wooden spoon. When the juices have reduced a little, pour over the chicken.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH WHITE WINE AND HERBS
2 broilers or fryers, 2 pounds each, quartered
6 tablespoons butter or butter and oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon each chopped fresh parsley, chives, chervil, and tarragon (or substitute 1 teaspoon dried herbs where necessary)
½ cup dry white wine
Lemon juice to taste


Brown the chicken pieces in the butter in one very large skillet or two smaller ones. Add the finely chopped onion, reduce the heat, and cover. Cook for about 10 minutes. Rearrange the pieces to cook evenly, and cook until tender, about 10 minutes more. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and add the herbs. Pour the wine over the chicken, cover, and let it cook down with the herbs, onion, and chicken juices. Degrease the sauce and correct the seasoning. Just before serving, add a few drops of freshly squeezed lemon juice. This is delicious with crusty fried potatoes and puréed spinach.

Serves four.


JEANNE OWEN'S SAUTÉ WITH TARRAGON
2 broilers, 2 pounds each, quartered
1 tablespoon dried or 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon
½ cup Riesling wine
6 tablespoons butter
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Prepare the broilers for sauté. If using dried tarragon soak in ¼ cup Riesling for 30 minutes. Melt the butter in one very large heavy skillet or two smaller ones and brown the pieces of chicken quickly. Add the remaining Riesling and reduce the heat. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook for 15 minutes. About 5 minutes before the chicken is done, add the fresh or soaked tarragon. Turn the chicken in this several times, then cook 5 to 10 minutes more, or until tender. Arrange on a hot platter. Swirl the pan juices over high heat for 2 minutes and pour over the chicken.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH TOMATO
2 broilers or fryers, 2 pounds each, quartered
6 tablespoons butter
Flour for dredging (optional)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons finely chopped onion
1 small clove garlic, finely chopped
½ cup dry white wine
3 medium tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and chopped
1 tablespoon chopped parsley


Brown the chicken pieces as directed under Basic Chicken Sauté (page 4) and season. Reduce the heat and add the onion and garlic. Cover and cook for 5 minutes. Add the wine, cover, and cook for 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes, cover, and cook 10 minutes more. Remove the chicken to a hot platter. Add parsley to the sauce and let it cook down for a minute or so. Correct the seasoning and pour over the chicken.

Serves four.


A LEMON SAUTÉ
6 tablespoons butter
1 broiler-fryer, 3½ pounds, quartered
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Juice of 2 lemons
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon chopped parsley


Heat the butter in a heavy skillet and brown the chicken pieces. Season to taste, reduce the heat, and cover. Cook very gently for about 25 minutes, turning twice.

Just before removing the cooked chicken from the pan, pour the lemon juice and zest over it. Cook for a minute, sprinkle with chopped parsley, and remove to a hot platter. Pour the pan juices over it.

During asparagus season, serve this dish with cooked asparagus lightly dusted with Parmesan cheese, arranging it around the chicken on the platter. You might also serve tiny new potatoes with chopped chives, and crusty French bread.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH MUSHROOMS
2 broilers, 2 pounds each, split
Flour for dredging
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons butter or other fat
1 tablespoon chopped onion
1 cup tiny mushroom caps or sliced mushrooms


Dredge the chicken halves with flour, salt, and pepper. Melt the butter or other fat in one very large skillet or two smaller ones and brown the chicken well on all sides. Reduce the heat and add the onion and the mushroom caps or sliced mushrooms. Cover the pan or pans and simmer for 10 minutes. Uncover, turn the chicken, and cook till tender. Correct the seasoning and arrange on a hot platter with the mushrooms and pan juices poured around it. Serve with fresh peas and a tossed green salad.

Serves four.


CHICKEN BASQUAISE
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 frying chickens, 2 to 2 ½ pounds each, quartered
Salt and freshly ground pepper
¾ cup dry white wine
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 green peppers, seeded and cut in 1-inch squares
2 canned green chilies, chopped
1 ½ cups canned Italian plum tomatoes, drained
¼ cup cognac
Pinch of saffron
¼ pound Virginia ham, diced
Chopped parsley


Brown the chicken in the butter in a heavy sauté pan. Reduce the heat, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Cook gently 5 to 8 minutes. Add ¼ cup of wine and cook another 10 minutes. Move the breast pieces to the top—the dark meat will take longer to cook—and continue cooking for 5 to 10 minutes, until just tender.

Meanwhile, prepare the sauce. Heat the olive oil in a skillet, add the onion, peppers, and chilies, and cook until soft. Add the tomatoes, cognac, remaining wine, and saffron. Simmer, uncovered, until reduced and thickened. Add the ham. Taste for seasoning. Pour the sauce over the chicken and sprinkle with chopped parsley. Serve with saffron rice.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH PEPPERS
4 or 5 green or red sweet peppers
2 small broilers or 1 large fryer, 3½ pounds in all
Flour for dredging
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup olive oil or cooking oil
2 tablespoons chopped onion
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely chopped
Lemon juice to taste
1 tablespoon chopped parsley


Broil the green or red peppers till skins are blackened and loosened from the flesh. Remove the skins and seeds and cut into strips. Set aside.

Prepare chicken for sauté. Dredge with flour, salt, and pepper. Heat the olive oil or cooking oil in one large, heavy skillet or two smaller ones and brown the chicken, turning frequently to get an evenness of color. Reduce the heat, add the onion and garlic, cover, and cook for 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and let cook down for about 5 minutes, turning the chicken in the sauce several times. Add the pepper strips and heat through. Correct the seasoning, and just before serving add a few drops of lemon juice and the chopped parsley. This is excellent with polenta.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH ONIONS
2 large Spanish onions, thinly sliced
7 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 fryer, 3½ pounds, cut up


Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Place the thinly sliced onions in a heavy-bottomed skillet over low heat and stir until they begin to color. Then add 4 tablespoons butter and allow to brown. Meanwhile, in another large skillet, melt 3 tablespoons butter with the oil. Brown the dark meat over fairly high heat. Add the white meat and brown, then add the browned onions. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover the pan and simmer for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the chicken is tender. Arrange on a hot platter with the onions and serve with sautéed potatoes and a green salad.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH CABBAGE
2 broilers, 2 pounds each, split
Flour for dredging
9 tablespoons butter
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 medium head cabbage, shredded
1½ teaspoons caraway seeds
1 cup heavy cream


Flour the chicken. Heat 6 tablespoons butter in one very large skillet or two smaller ones and brown the chicken. Add salt and pepper to taste and continue cooking for about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, wash the shredded cabbage. Cook in 2 cups salted water till almost tender, about 5 minutes. Drain and toss with 3 tablespoons butter and the caraway seeds. Add to the chicken. Pour the cream over, cover, and let simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Taste for seasoning and serve.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH HAM
6 tablespoons butter
2 small broilers or 1 large fryer, 3½ pounds in all, cut up
2 thin slices smoked ham, cut into julienne
1 medium onion, very finely chopped
1 large clove garlic, grated
1 cup sliced mushrooms
Several sprigs of parsley, coarsely chopped
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup white wine


Melt the butter in one large, heavy skillet or two smaller ones. Add the chicken pieces and brown on all sides. Reduce the heat and add the smoked ham, onion, and garlic. Sauté for 10 minutes. Add the mushrooms and parsley. Turn the chicken; add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and cook another 10 to 12 minutes, or till tender. About 5 minutes before the chicken is done, add the white wine and let it cook down. Remove the chicken to a hot platter and pour the sauce over it. Serve with corn pudding or spoon bread.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH OYSTERS
4 tablespoons butter
4 to 6 chicken legs with thighs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Flour for dredging
18 oysters, shucked and liquor reserved
2 egg yolks, beaten
1 ¼ to 2 cups cracker crumbs, or as needed
1 cup clarified butter, or as needed
½ cup sherry
Chopped parsley


Heat the 4 tablespoons of butter in a skillet and brown the chicken over a brisk flame. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cover and sauté till tender, about 15 to 20 minutes.

While the chicken is cooking, flour the oysters and dip in beaten egg yolk, then in cracker crumbs, and fry in ½ inch clarified butter till nicely browned. Season to taste. Remove the chicken and oysters from their pans and arrange on a hot platter. Add the oyster liquor to the oyster pan and heat it well, scraping the residue from the pan into the sauce. Add this, along with the sherry, to the pan in which the chicken was cooked and let it cook down for a minute or two. Pour over the chicken and oysters, sprinkle with chopped parsley, and serve.

Serves four.


A SAUTÉ WITH CURRY AND TOMATO SAUCE
3 tablespoons butter
1 broiler, 2 pounds, split
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 medium onion, very finely chopped
1 cup fresh tomato purée
1 tablespoon curry powder or to taste


Melt the butter in a heavy skillet and brown the chicken over brisk heat. Reduce the heat, add salt and pepper to taste and the onion. Cover and cook until the chicken is tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove to a hot platter or casserole.

Add the tomato purée and curry powder to the pan juices and let it cook down for several minutes, stirring to create a good blend. Taste for seasoning. Pour steaming hot over the chicken, and serve with boiled rice and a little chutney.

Serves two.


A VIENNESE SAUTÉ
1 chicken, 2 pounds, quartered
3 tablespoons clarified butter or other fat
1 tablespoon chopped onion
2 tablespoons paprika
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
¼ cup heavy cream
¼ cup chicken broth
1 tablespoon butter
Dash of lemon juice
Chopped parsley


Prepare the chicken for sauté. Cook very gently in the clarified butter or other fat until delicately browned. Add the onion, paprika, and salt and pepper and cook until well blended. Reduce the heat, cover, and simmer gently for 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the chicken to a hot platter. Add to the pan the cream and the chicken broth, which can be made from the giblets. Then add 1 tablespoon butter and let the sauce reduce over brisk heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Finally add a dash of lemon juice and a sprinkling of parsley. Pour the sauce around the chicken. Serve with thin slices of zucchini sautéed in garlic and olive oil.

Serves two.


A SOUTHWESTERN SAUTÉ

This is a purely American Southwest version of the sauté, and one that has a delicious tang. I had it first at the home of a friend in Arizona. It was served with a large dish of polenta, made with water-ground cornmeal flavored with butter and grated Parmesan cheese. We washed it all down with a bottle of rough, rich claret.

2 broilers or fryers, 2 pounds each, quartered
6 to 8 thin slices of bacon
Flour for dredging
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
2 teaspoons paprika
Sprinkle of cayenne
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 small white onion, finely chopped
1 cup tomato purée
2 teaspoons chili powder
Sweet basil, fresh or dried, to taste
1/3 cup dry red wine
Chopped parsley


(Continues...)

Excerpted from Beard on Birds by James Beard. Copyright © 2001 Reed College. Excerpted by permission of OPEN ROAD INTEGRATED MEDIA.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

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Beard on Birds 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
MargieS1 More than 1 year ago
Given To Me For An Honest Review Beard of Birds by James Beard with an introduction by Julia Childs has many classic poultry recipes. This cookbook is for beginning  cooks all the way through to experienced cooks.  There are no color pictures in it other than a few black and white sketches. These recipes have been updated and the spices have also been updated.  You'll find not only chapters for the main poultry chicken but other  chapters on turkey, duck and other poultry.  This would be a good book to add to your kitchen.