A Delicious History of Your Favourite Broasted Chicken
October 29th, 2020
The America of the early 20th century was dominated mostly by the consumption of red meat, which included pork and beef, which was available on the American soil in abundance. While in today’s age, this might seem like a distant idea, the humble bird loved across America, the chicken, made inroads into the American cuisine much later in the 20th century and only after facing significant headwinds.
The average American today consumes a little short of 100 pounds of chicken per year, a figure that far outpaces the consumption of America’s once favourite meat, beef by almost double.
The early 20th century saw the monopoly of red meat in the American food market, due to easy supply and a general preference of the people to consume that variant of meat. Chicken, aside from being extremely short in supply, was also considered to be a meat reserved for the rich and famous due to the premium pricing it was sold for. The genetic variation of chicken available at the time, also made it too much effort, for too little on the plate.
And then, just as a blessing for the chicken industry for the time, the US government, fuelled by the worries of the chicken cultivators of the time, launched the “Chicken of Tomorrow” competition, by virtue of which farmers developed chickens with larger breasts, which led to an unprecedented boom in the industry and made the meat and overnight phenomenon.
The feasibility and large scale uses of the breast meat of the chicken made it widely available and economically feasible for the grocery stores to stack.
Coupled with this, the 1970s saw the Americans starting to worry about the health impacts of the consumption of red meat, after the US government published their first ever dietary guidelines and directly told its citizens to reduce the consumption of red meat and increase the consumption of poultry and fish. The chicken industry, while growing, received significant upswing from this, and by 1992 it had overtaken both beef and pork to become the most preferred meat in the country, a position it holds to date. The fact that by this time, the American farmers had already figured out how to make chicken easily accessible, easily cultivable and easily scalable, made chicken a clear winner in the meat industry. Added to this, the fact that the meat was versatile and easier to cook than red meat, made it a regular in American households.
The rich and wealthy Americans of the time started to prefer chicken salads as a must have on their dinner table, which led to the innovation of various sauces and dressings to couple with the chicken. As the Americans began to welcome this new meat into their platters, new dishes got invented and new flavours came into existence.
One food that became increasingly popular during this time was Fried Chicken.
“Colonel” Harland Sanders who started selling his fried chicken at his restaurant caught on early to the rage that fried chicken was, and the rest as they say is history. The availability of this variety of chicken at quick serve restaurants and the innovation that these fast rising chains were doing with the modest chicken, whether it was fried chicken or chicken nuggets acted as catalysts to the popularity of frying chicken. Very soon, there were a wide range of fried chicken options available across America, and the meat that was premium, scarce and expensive 20 years ago, was now being served on the plate of every American dining table.
Soon enough, fried chicken was America’s favourite food and started to get adapted in various forms across the nation.
Some of the most popular forms are:
- Buffalo chicken which is fried chicken tossed in sauce, which has become one of the most sought after varieties of fried chicken.
- Chicken Maryland which is chicken fried in buttermilk which gives it a more buttery taste and is sometimes served with a side of creamy gravy.
- Popcorn chicken which gained popularity as a bar snack form of the popular fried chicken, is now a regular item on the menu of several restaurants.
- Broasted chicken: While there are several forms of fried chicken, one of the most iconic and authentic variations of fried chicken comes in the form of broasted chicken. The process of cooking broasted chicken involves pressure frying the chicken at high temperatures that not only preserves the moisture of the chicken but makes it a healthier choice versus the traditional fried chicken cooking style.
From then to now, fried chicken has taken over the American taste buds on a scale which makes it a must have on the menu for any American restaurant that aims to keep customers happy. In fact, the popularity can be gauged from the fact that even popular and iconic Italian diners such as Paul’s Pizza in Detroit cannot give the broasted chicken a miss on their menu. While the charm of Paul’s undoubtedly lies in their crafted to perfection pizzas which are made with utmost care in rustic brick fired ovens, that has not stopped the broasted chicken from making its mark on the patrons of Paul’s. It continues to be one of the most fast selling and popular items on the menu of the pizza chain which started its operations in 1962, much before fried chicken became the rage that it is today. Keeping in tune with the culinary preferences of their loyal customers, Paul’s not just offers the widest variety of pizzas, pastas and salads, it also serves a wide variety of chicken dinners of various proportions, enough to feed a table of hungry diners.
Just in case someone is not feeling up to a dine in evening, Paul’s also delivers your favourite pizzas and the evergreen broasted chicken to the doorsteps of Americans across Southwest Detroit and the River Rouge up till late hours into the night, for all the people wanting a quick late night meal.
So the next time you feel like having the historically rich broasted chicken, just order online at paulspizza.net, and have it delivered to your doorstep hot and crispy!