Tuesday, 8 January 2013

Chicken skins

I get very irritated when I am eating chicken with somebody else and see that somebody else carefully putting the chicken skin to one side, not with a view to saving the best bit till last, but to outright rejection.

In order to be worth eating, however, a chicken skin needs to be crisp. Never flabby. In other words, the skin should always be removed for the purposes of a casserole or a curry. But not, in my view, discarded. This is what to do with them, as a little reward, once you have put the casserole or whatever in the oven.

Slosh some olive oil and sea salt on the skins and rub them together. Heat some olive oil in a frying pan. Get it pretty hot. Then put in the chicken skins, pressing and spreading them very flatly across the pan with a spatula. There will be lots of smoke and possibly even sparks. Sprinkle a little curry powder (Bolst's for preference) over the top and then turn the skin and, if necessary, add some more curry powder. Allow the skins to crisp but not burn in the pan. Every so often, tip off the excess fat. Right at the end, when the skins are as crisp as they will get, squeeze on some lemon juice. More smoke. Tip on to a plate and then eat. The photograph isn't just of chicken skins: there is partridge, poussin, guinea fowl and pheasant as well. A feast following the making of last year's cold raised game pie.

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