When modern man no longer had to hunt, nor cultivate, nor worry about where his next apple was coming from, he created pesticides. This was about the same time that grapefruit started to taste bitter because man had a surfeit of comestibles at his disposal that he didn’t necessarily have to shoot or grow himself.
Having time on his hands, modern man decided that he not only wanted to see beauty in art but also on his plate because, you see, he wasn’t really hungry and had a desire to eat also with his eyes. The French started this. In France it is essential to get to the farmers’ market early if you don’t want produce with fingerprints that has been squeezed and pawed so much that it’s practically colorless. The French invented food art.
As more and more people passed over bug eaten, malformed fruits and vegetables in search of perfection, no longer content to wash it off and kiss it up to God, business man decided to supply that demand by talking the problem over with science man. The concern was health; who knows what those bugs and/or worms were eating they asked, and although the answer was apparent, it wasn’t marketable. So that’s why.
Jade’s home today, ready to “eat Hell off the cross” as my grandmother used to say. Soon I will be as old as my grandmother was when I knew her and am practicing these “bon mots” to insert into conversations with young people
The poultry man in the market sells great local products; fresh and pre-boiled eggs, turkey, duck and chicken. Last week he was out of poussin, but he had some Spring-like chickens that caught my eye. Why did I buy two? They looked nice sitting next to each other and I didn’t want to break up the set. Plus, we like chicken salad
Spatchcock time! I haven’t spatchcocked anything in a long time and needed the practice in case my mind starts to go. I looked in the garden and saw loads of herbs, so I took some sage, rosemary, thyme and oregano to slather on the chicken with olive oil.
I don’t like rice or risotto. I know, gasp. That’s just the way it is. But I like orzo/risseti/risoni because it’s shaped like rice but is actually pasta.
The Italians are so clever! Thank you Italian people! I boiled some orzo with chicken broth and mixed in chopped fresh basil and Parmesan before serving. So good.
We had courgette with the chicken and orzo because it’s good and you can practically cook it with just a smoldering glance.
Herb Grilled Chicken
2 small chickens, spatch cocked and seasoned with salt and pepper
3 tbsp mixed fresh herbs (rosemary, sage, thyme, oregano), chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
4 -5 tbsp olive oil
Mix the herbs, garlic and olive oil together in a small bowl, then smear it all over the chicken. Save any reserve for basting. If you don’t have any reserve, pour a little olive oil in the same bowl and baste with that.
Preheat the grill by turning the burners on to the maximum, until the temperature reaches 450 -500 F. Turn half the burners down to low and brown the chicken skin side down, weighting them with a cast iron skillet to flatten. Remove the skillet, baste the inside of the chicken and turn over, skin side up, basting the skin. Grill the inside for about 5 minutes, turn the burners on the chicken side completely off, lower the top and grill for about 45 -50 minutes, turning and basting occasionally.
2 tbsp butter
1 garlic clove, chopped
1 cup dried orzo
1 2/3 cup chicken broth
Salt and pepper
1 1/2 tbsp fresh basil, chopped
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
Melt the butter in a large saute pan, then saute the orzo and garlic until the pasta begins to brown. Add the broth, salt and pepper, bring to a boil, cover, then simmer for about 20 minutes. Stir in the basil and cheese and serve.