How to Eat a Chicken

Food writer Jim Dixon, on How to Eat a Chicken

By Jim Dixon

Here’s how to make several meals from each one.

More precisely, how we eat a chicken, and this applies to birds both home cooked and brought from the store. Now that you’re splitting those chickens down the breast, here’s how to make several meals from each one.

"I like the wings for their high skin to meat ratio"

I like the wings for their high skin to meat ratio, so that’s what’s on my plate for the first round. Judith goes for the back with its hidden pockets of delectable dark meat. The next meal we split the legs and thighs, accompanied by whatever other leftovers might be around, or maybe just a salad.

And while presalting and ass-backward spatchcocking help keep the breasts from drying out, they’re the least favorite part of the chicken for both of us. By day three we’re also getting tired of plain old chicken, so I’ll pick off the white meat and use it to make chicken salad, add more protein to simple beans and rice, or toss it into a
skillet of Spanish migas (like this, but with chicken). If the refrigerator’s got the usual tub of romesco, I mix some with the cut up breast meat for sandwiches or salads.

The whole time I’ve been saving any pieces of chicken skin that I managed to keep from eating. I put them into a skillet and slide it under the broiler for a few minutes until they’re nice and crispy. If I don’t eat them right out of the pan (delicious with a nice shot of Crystal), they get crumbled onto salads or added to a sandwich.