Chicken: The World’s Best Tasting Bird Since 600 BC
The chicken we know and raise today for food is a decedent of Red Junglefowl and Grey Junglefowl and were first raised for food thousands of years ago in the northern regions of the Indian subcontinent. There are Babylonian carvings from around 600 BC that depict chicken meat. During the Middle Ages chicken was the most widely available and consumed meat, it was one of the basic ingredients in a stew called White Dish and consisted usually of chicken and fried onions, seasoned with sugar and spices and cooked in milk.
Whole raw chicken can be frozen for storage and will keep its quality for up to 12 months. Raw chicken parts can keep for up to 9 months in the freezer. Raw chicken giblets can keep in the freezer for up to 4 months. Cooked chicken can keep for up to 4 months. When thawing your frozen raw chicken keep it away from other foods, so that the juices don’t contaminate other foods. Any wrapping or absorbent paper should be immediately discarded and any surfaces the raw chicken touches should be immediately cleaned before any further food preparation is done.
NOTE: Raw chicken may contain Salmonella and for that reason should be cooked to a minimum temperature of 165 degrees to prevent food-borne illness. Although you may find raw chicken in some Japanese cuisines, such as Torisashi or Toriwasa.
Chicken can be cooked in many different ways, most commonly fried, baked, roasted, grilled and barbecued. Chicken can also be made into sausages. Chicken can also be used in salads, skewers, curries, tacos and even in spaghetti or chili. Chicken can also be used for deli meat or dogs (franks).
The most common variety of chicken consumed in the United States are Cornish and White Rock. Chicken consumption in the United States increased during WWII due to a shortage of pork and beef. Chicken raised specifically for food consumption are called broilers and are typically butchered at a young age, for example many Cornish hybrids are butchered as early as 8 weeks for fryers and 12 weeks for roasters.