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Old 02-21-2010, 11:41 PM   #1
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Bresse Chicken

I was dumbstruck to find the famous Bresse chicken of France in an upscale supermarket here. I thought I would never see the day! The chicken is dressed, frozen, and vacuum-packed. I checked the carcass closely and yep, it's the real mccoy. You can tell -- the chicken head has been purposely left on with its white feathers and red crown intact, and the feet are blue (with a metal band as proof of origin).

Bresse chickens are like royalty among organic chickens, raised to exacting standards it's supposed to yield great taste and texture. Highly valued in France, it would be hard to find these chickens making their way out of France or Europe for that matter.

So I am happily considering buying one since it's such a rare find. It's 4.4 llbs for about $25. It's frozen solid though. If not for the vacuum-wrapping, I'd be convinced that the poor long-traveled chicken has all but suffered freezer burn all over.

Does anyone have any suggestion for a recipe to maximize the benefits of the famed taste and texture of the Bresse chicken?

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Old 02-22-2010, 10:59 AM   #2
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I actually found some recipes on the internet specifically for Bresse chickens! Out of the lot, I'm considering one that bakes the entire chicken in a simple salt crust with some herbs inside the chicken cavity. This way, the chicken will be as moist as possible and I will get to savor the actual taste of the chicken unmasked by strong sauces or spices.

Also, to discern the Bresse difference, I also plan to bake a regular chicken in the same way alongside the Bresse one so that I can compare the taste of the two to see what the big deal is all about. :-)
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Old 02-22-2010, 11:51 AM   #3
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I have never heard of them being frozen, either. But having eaten them in France, they are delicious. However, I think there are a lot of really delicious heirloom free-range chickens out there.

I will be interested in hearing what you think of it, especially in comparison with the chicken you normally cook.
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Old 02-22-2010, 12:23 PM   #4
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Sure ChefJune, will report back to you when I've done it. :-)
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