Barbados’ national dish should be chicken. Don’t ask me if fried or baked, because I think that question would cause a national war, or at least a debate, not only among citizens, but within our very own minds.
While we do love our fried chicken, baked chicken is simply “duh bomb” if done right, and is a local favourite for Sunday lunch, which, by the way, also becomes Monday lunch or dinner.
Tomorrow, Wednesday, March 19, is Poultry Day, and I think that now is as good a time as any for me to state my case. Before I do so, let me be fair.
According to daysoftheyear.com, Poultry Day is about celebrating the whole range of domestic birds which are raised for their meat and eggs. It also reminds us of “just how boring Thanksgiving, Christmas and other holidays would be without the addition of a turkey, chicken, duck, goose or pheasant to the table”.
Though these are all delicious birds, “I is ah Bajan” and I love me some chicken. So for Poultry Day that will be my focus!
Now here’s my argument. I know Bajans love their flying fish and cou-cou, and that we used to have an abundance of flying fish, but do we eat nearly as much flying fish as before –– or fish, period –– as we do chicken? I have never gone to an excursion and eaten or even seen fish.
Chicken is usually the star at every party, lime, luncheon, picnic and so on. Further, can we ever have any of the above-mentioned events without some form of cake or pastry which relies on the eggs from this star bird?
Now that I’ve said the word star again, it reminds me of the Star chicken supplier on the island; but I’ll get to them later. I was putting forth a case to have Barbados’ national dish changed to chicken and something.
You guys will need to help me with this one, because I don’t know if to say chicken and pie, chicken and rice and peas, chicken and chips, or what. All I know is that we love chicken in any and every form –– baked, fried, stuffed, pickled, boiled, grilled, rotisserized (my word) . . . .
As long as it is cooked chicken, Bajans eat it; and we eat almost every edible part of these wonderful birds, from the necks down to the “steppers”. Okay, I am officially hungry because now I am imagining my dad’s barbecued steppers, or my friends’ steppers stew.
I am truly a chicken bone lover; so I gravitate towards the neck, wings, ribs and back. I also cannot help but love the innards ’cause fried up livers, gizzards or hearts are a fantastic Friday night meal, and they also make a great stew any day of the week.
See, I’ve gone off track already. I wanted to share a recipe with you guys, but couldn’t trust myself to share one that everyone could enjoy, so I asked my friends at Star Chick Ltd to supply a chicken recipe to accompany this article. They sent me one called Boneless Chicken & Sweet Potato Dumplings In Creole Sauce.
Now I’m sure you’ll appreciate this more than anything I could have supplied, and to my delight it turns out that they are actually having a sale this Friday and Saturday (I’ll give you the details below). It’s a good opportunity to stock up on your chicken and experiment with some new and exciting recipes.
Now with all that said, don’t you agree with me that our national dish should be chicken-based?
As promised. Here are the details:
On Sale this Friday, March 21, and Saturday, March 22 – Grade B chicken, Star Chick Ltd, Babbs, St Lucy. Telephone 439-6419, fax 439-8802.