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Keep Cooking, Things Will Be Fine: Or How to Make a Broiled Leg of Lamb

How to Cut Up a Chicken, Otherwise Known as Life is What Happens When You’re Busy Cooking Other Dishes

There’s a saying that I can’t help thinking these days: “Life is what happens when you’re busy making other plans.” Often attributed to John Lennon—it is in the lyrics to his song “Beautiful Boy (Darling Boy)—the phrase is actually much older. According to the site The Quote Investigator, it dates back to Allen Saunders, a cartoonist from the middle of the last century. As I’m partial to cartoonists and drawing, that makes me happy.

I mention this because as I look around me, and as I go from planning each week’s meals and shopping, and cooking, I realize that life is rushing by. I have things I want to get done—from going swimming and biking with my girls to updating the look and functionality of this blog to publishing another book—that I just can’t seem to get around to doing.

That said, there are a few accomplishments I’m proud of. The smallest of these came to me on Friday, when I came across a video on the web that solved a vexing problem—how to cut up a chicken.

I’m very good with a knife, because I grew up working in a retail fish market, and I know how to fillet and bone all kinds of fish. I struggle a bit when it comes to poultry and meat, but I’m always confident that I’ll know where to cut and how. But cutting up a whole chicken has stumped me. I can get about three-quarters of the way through the bird, but taking out the backbone was always a problem.

I couldn’t figure out where to cut the bird, no matter how many books I consulted. I love cutting up whole birds because it’s a way to save money. When it came to dealing with that backbone, all I did was rip and tear and pull until I had it off.

Then I saw this video from Ian Knauer and Gourmet, and on Saturday night I used what learned to cut up a whole bird to make my Chicken, Tomato, Lemon, Potato, and Olive dish. Basically, all you need to do is follow the lines of fat and that will tell you exactly where to cut. The video has all the details.

I found the video through Twitter, by following You Fed a Baby Chili? which led me to Cook Fearless, and as soon as I get the chance, I’m going to update my blog roll to include those sites. They are really great.

Here’s the how-to video on cutting up a chicken, via Cook Fearless. Enjoy!


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