I can’t speak for the rest of the LA area, but the eastern San Fernando and western San Gabriel Valleys are experiencing a run on chicken feet. Yup, that’s right – feet. In my book, they make the very best stock. My standard procedure is as follows: whenever I roast a chicken I carve all the meat off the bones, bag the frame and put it in the freezer. When there are 3 or 4 bags, I buy a couple of pounds of feet, maybe some necks and back and make a pot of stock. I add all the usual suspects: bay leaves from the tree down the courtyard, sage, thyme, and parsley from the garden (sorry, no rosemary here), celery, carrot, and onion. Hours and hours later I strain it and reduce it to take up less room in the freezer. I boil it down to at least double strength, but this time I’m going to go all out and make some chickeny chicken bombs a la my fellow blogger Conor Bofin.
But back to the run on feet (pun firmly intended, both here and in the title) – On January 2, with 3 bags of bones on hand and realizing that all the jars in the back of the freezer were turkey stock, I decided to stock up. Off I went to Whole Foods for their lovely organic feet, only to find a big empty space in the butcher case. Apparently, someone was waiting for the doors to open at 8 AM and made off with the 17 pounds of feet that were in the store. The butcher told me not to bother checking the other Pasadena store as the next two people (who wanted 10 pounds each) had chased across town to clean out that store too. I called the Glendale store only to have the butcher there ask me what the hell was going on. I figured that I would just go to the store early on the 3rd as this could not possibly repeat. Wrong wrong wrong. This time I called Glendale and was told that yes, they did indeed have feet. I promised to come over straight away. By the time the man I spoke with hung up and walked over to package my poultry parts they had been bagged by some other shopper! No delivery on Sunday, so I was out of luck until Monday. I was on the phone to the store at 7:55, before the key was turned in the door, My feet were safely bagged up with my name on the package waiting to be picked up after work.
HA! I feel so much more prepared for February now, and every neighbor who passes my kitchen window stops to ask what I’m cooking. The uniform reply is “FEET?! EW!!!” They don’t know what they’re missing!
For dinner tonight – avogolemono with Swiss chard, peas, and carrots. Oh, la!
Thanks for teaching us that one, Demitrius!