Food Is Not Your Enemy

Chicken: Safe or Scary?

We’ve been hearing for years that we should cut down on the amount of red meat we eat. Since these exhortations began, Americans have largely been plunging their forks into chicken instead — to the tune of 8 billion birds a year — because it’s healthier, right? Well, that depends. Read my latest column on AOL’s ParentDish to find out.

Go Ahead and Roast Yourself a Chicken
October 9, 2009, 1:18 pm
Filed under: Meat, Recipes | Tags: ,

There’s pretty much nothing easier to make for dinner than a roast chicken. Rinse it. Put in in a roasting pan. Brush it with a mixture of melted butter, a few tablespoons of lemon juice, and 1 teaspoon of any dried herb you like. Put it in a 375 degree oven for about 2 hours. Done.

If you don’t have time when you get home from work to wait the 2 hours, then cook the chicken the night before, during your TV-watching time after dinner. You can then simply reheat it or enjoy it cold the next night.

When wholesome, home-cooked food is this easy to prepare, there’s no reason to constantly rely on takeout, now, is there? Plus, you’ll save a ton of money over the long run. And a ton of calories.

Dirty Birds

“Poultry was the most commonly identified source of food poisoning in the United States in 2006, followed by leafy vegetables and fruits and nuts, according to a report released Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.”

This story, from The New York Times, underlines why 1) We need better government regulation of our food supply and 2) We should not eat factory-farmed chicken.

Thankfully, the Obama administration is actually paying attention to food-safety issues. As far as chicken goes, it’s really no wonder that the commercial chicken is infected. The birds are literally stuffed into small cages, living their lives on top of each other, their beaks cut off so they won’t injure each other, their feathers falling out. The chicken that costs 98 cents a pound in the supermarket comes from sick animals. And no surprise, sick animals can make humans sick.

Vote with your pocketbook to stop this practice. If you spend a little more for organic/free-ranging chicken, you’ll be getting a healthier, more humanely treated chicken that tastes better and is better for you. If enough Americans make the switch to organic chicken, it sends a message to companies like Perdue and Tyson that we’re no longer interested in consuming dirty birds.