Thursday, April 29, 2010

grilling your chicken

If I started a "What I Miss in Mexico Already" list, pollo asado would top it.

I love chicken.  Always have.

Several years ago, I started eating it almost exclusively as my protein.  I have a pretty good tongue for good chicken.

I cannot recall when I began the habit, but several years ago, I would drive over to Safeway and buy a roasted chicken each week.  It would be enough for a meal -- and provide chicken for at least three stir fry dishes during the week.  Price: $6.95 (US).

When I moved to Mexico, I found grilled chicken stands everywhere.  My favorite -- Pollo Kaliman. 

For $85 (Mx), or about $6.80, they provided a chicken, rice, cole slaw, and a bag of chili salsa.  A great deal.

That may not sound like much of a deal.  After all, the Safeway chicken costs about the same.

The deal is that Mexican chicken tastes a lot -- and I mean a lot in the term of acres, not just meters -- better than any chicken I have tasted north of the border.  That includes the much-vaunted organic free-range chickens that spend their afternoons scratching in Seattle coffee bars. 

I am not certain why they taste better.  Maybe grubs and worms are processed into better-tasting chickens.

All I know is I love the taste, and I will miss it for the next six months.

Until I return, I will need to be satisfied with Safeway pullets and Reser's potato salad.


Anonymous said...

I agree, somehow it does taste better. For me, Pollo Vagabundo is the place to get excellent chicken. The salsa was the crowning touch!

Anonymous said...

Over the years I mostly went to Mexico by myself....finding good street food vendors was another thing I loved about being there. I still miss it.

Anonymous said...

Did you read that Mr. Reser died this past week? Of course, his descendants will carry on the business. He did a lot for charities, especially the Special Olympics.


Tancho said...

And after all that you are back in Salem for why?????
It's not like you need the it must be for the cool weather. I hope the memory of the pollo doesn't diminish that quick.

Charles said...

Steve -
I've heard it's because they're fed mostly corn - that would account for the yellowish color before cooking. Also a little fattier than the chickens here NOB - but best of all, no hormones!

Irene said...

When you are able to drive a car maybe you could find a cafe in Woodburn that would offer something close to what you are missing.

- Mexican Trailrunner said...

Steve, I don't know where you are exactly, but find the Mexican neighborhoods nearby. Guaranteed to have pollo asado.

Adrienne said...

As a friend said about goats, they are what they eat. Good eats equals good eats.

Steve Cotton said...

Francisco -- I started to buy a roasted chicken at Safeway the other day and could not bring myself to do it. Not yet.

Mom -- I missed Mr. Reser's obituary. I will just need to eat that much more of his potato salad in tribute.

Tancho -- I am back in Salem for a limited six months to train my successor at work. It should be a fun venture. It will also allow me to avoid another Melaque summer.

Charles -- Corn makes sense. I remember my grandmother's chickens had yellow skin and fat. And they were delicious -- the chicken, that is.

Irene -- Just driving would be good.

Mexican Trailrunner -- Irene has a good idea. Woodburn.

Adrienne -- Maybe I should raise them in my backyard. Neighbor?