My husband likes to keep up with the latest research news.
It’s kind of a hobby of his, which is nice; it made researching the first four chapters of my book very easy for me. I just set him to work on it.
Sometimes he sends me links to things he thinks I’ll find interesting. One time he sent me a news article about how researchers in Saskatchewan were working on a breed of canary seed they hoped would become a suitable grain for inclusion in a gluten-free diet.
More recently he sent me a link to an article about a study published in the Journal of America Geriatrics Society which seemed to indicate that diets high in animal protein were beneficial in helping to prevent functional decline in elderly adults. He thought this an interesting development because chicken is such a good source of animal protein, and we eat a lot of chicken.
I don’t follow the world of cutting edge research as closely as he does so I got a kick out of getting a “scoop” on him thanks to my friends at the Chicken Farmers of Canada. It seems they have been conducting their own research of late and what they’ve found is very interesting. Apparently, cooking chicken with the skin on, then removing it prior to eating, actually reduces the amount of fat in the chicken over a piece cooked skinless.
There’s always been a debate over what’s healthier, chicken cooked with the skin on – which produces a juicer dish, or chicken cooked with the skin off. Skin off, it’s generally believed, is healthier because most of the fat is in the skin of the chicken. But there’s a drawback, depending on the method of cooking, skinless chicken can dry out quicker. What the CFC discovered was that cooking chicken with the skin on actually worked to absorb or draw out some of the fat from within the cut of chicken. This actually reduced the overall amount of fat in the final product. Very interesting.
Sometimes I cook my chicken with the skin off. Sometimes I cook my chicken with the skin on, but if I do, I always remove it before eating so this is actually good news for me. The fine folks at the CFC are also quick to point out another benefit of their research.
“Buying a bone-in, skin-on cut of chicken is not only cheaper, but comes with other significant health benefits,” the CFC said in the announcement about their study. “Most bone-in cuts also contain significantly more zinc, vitamin B and B12.”
Lower fat, higher nutritional content and lower cost all add up to good food value and great recipe potential. To conduct my own research on the subject, I grabbed a recipe from the CFC website and made it for supper. My test subjects, er, family all gave it thumbs up.
- 1 whole chicken
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 6 thin slices lemon
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 cup plain Balkan-style (aka Greek) yogurt
- 1/3 English cucumber
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon red onion, minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh dill, minced
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- Remove the backbone by cutting down either side of the spine using kitchen shears. Turn the chicken over, and press gently on the breast to flatten the chicken. (HERE is a great video showing how easily this is done)
- Use your fingers to gently loosen the skin from the breasts and legs to form pockets, leaving the skin attached at the edges.
- In a small bowl, combine the garlic, dill, oregano, 1/2 tablespoon oil, and lemon juice. Stuff 2/3 of this mixture under the chicken skin. Slide the lemon slices under the skin as well. Pat to flatten.
- Turn the chicken over and spread with the remaining seasonings. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. (You can prepare this ahead of time, and refrigerate for up to 12 hours).
- Heat 1 burner of 2-burner barbecue (or the outside burners on a 3 burner barbecue) to medium heat. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper. Brush the grill over the unlit portion with oil. Place the chicken, skin side down, on the oiled grill. Close the lid and grill until a food thermometer inserted into thighnofollow registers 185 degrees F, about 1 hour. Remove to cutting board, tent with foil and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.
- Peel the cucumber, and dice. Place cucumber in a colander, set over a bowl, and sprinkle with salt. Let sit for 30 minutes.
- Stir together the yogurt, cucumber, onion, dill, and garlic. Serve with the chicken.
Win Great Prizes
You know what would make grilling this gorgeous Garlicky Greek Chicken even easier? A new Barbecue Utensil set! Thanks to the Chicken Farmers of Canada, you can ENTER TO WIN one now! Just fill out the Rafflecopter to be entered to win. (Open to Canadian Residents only. One winner will be chosen at random by Rafflecopter. A winner will be emailed on April 2, 2014. If I don’t hear back within 24 hours, another winner will be chosen.)
This giveaway is now closed. Thank you to all that entered. Want more chances to win more prizes? The @Chicken Farmers are hosting a Twitter party on March 27th, 2014 at 9 pm (EDT). Join in the #ChickenSuperFood Party to have a chance to win over $500 in prizes! You must RSVP to be eligible to win. Open to Canadians only.
Disclosure: I am participating in the Chicken Farmers of Canada campaign managed by SJ Consulting. I received compensation in exchange for my participation in this campaign. The opinions on this blog are my own.