In her biweekly column, Kitchen Basics, Susan Pachikara of Cardamom Kitchen demystifies essential cooking skills with step-by-step instructions and her own handsome photos. Whether she's showing us how much brown sugar we're meant to "pack"(or is it cram?) into measuring cups or how to detect when our onions are properly caramelized, Susan is the nonna we never had -- until now. Now, go on and get cozy under her wing.
This week, Susan demonstrates how to carve a chicken.
When it comes to chicken, people seem to fall into two camps: those who crave dark meat and those who want to gobble up the white. The good news is that roasting a whole bird, which is one of the easiest and most soul-satisfying preparations, can satisfy a hankering for either.
What about carving it up, you ask? Well, that’s also quite simple if you have a sharp knife and a trusted cutting board.
How to Carve a Chicken
Allow the roast chicken to rest for about 15 minutes. That keeps the meat juicy and your fingers protected.
Place the chicken on a cutting board with the breast side facing up and legs pointing toward to you. Carefully slice the skin between the thigh and the breast to locate the joint. Bend the thigh away from the breast and cut through the joint.
Slice through the joint that connects the thigh and drumstick.
Repeat on the other side.
Hold each wing away from the body and cut it at the joint.
Following the curve of the neck cavity, slit the flesh until you reach the wishbone. Carefully, pull it out.
Slice into the flesh on one side of the breast bone. When you hit the rib cage, slide the knife under the breast, following the contour of the rib cage, and remove in one piece. Repeat with the breast portion on the other side of the breast bone.
Slice the breast into smaller pieces crosswise.
Susan's roast chicken with a colorful side of Brussels sprouts and carrots
I’d love to see your tips for carving poultry! Share them with your fellow cooks in the comments section below.
Are you new to cooking? Tell me what skills you'd like to learn and your idea could be featured in an upcoming post!
Photos by Susan Pachikara
Want more basic tips from Susan? Check out her previous post: Kitchen Basics: Prepping Cabbage.
Susan writes the blog Cardamom Kitchen to share her culinary experiences as an Indian-American rooted in the Midwest.