Using a knife and fork perhaps? Or getting those fingers nice and sticky? Maybe so. But which parts of the chicken do you actually eat? Last Sunday my husband and I had a good laugh about our cultural differences, which is totally expected of course as I’m from East and he is from West. Sometimes our cultural differences do cross paths and to be honest, it’s these little things which make our quotidian exciting and fun. We get to travel instantly from the stories which emerge.
When it comes to chicken however, I claim to have a bit of a head start. As a little girl, I was (and I’d say fortunate enough) able to see the entire picture from farm to table, thanks to my mother’s chicken farm. My mother didn’t just let us watch but rather got us involved in every aspect. I grew up looking after chicken, from their tender golden colour as baby chicks to the matured bird on our dining table. Some chicks even hatched in the warmth of our kitchen as my mother feared that the magpies would have them for supper long before they made it to maturity.
The question then, which parts do you eat? Well, in Tanzania there is little that we don’t eat. Whereas in the West, animal parts such as kidneys, head, feet etc are discarded, those very bits were the ones which we fought for as kids. We raised our tiny hands quickly when mama asked who wants firigisi or gizzard as you may know it.
Last Sunday I made what in UK is considered a typical British tradition – the Sunday roast. I was getting ready to assemble my ingredients and that’s when my hubby spotted the head of the chicken still intact. ‘Oh, the head is till on!’ I replied instantly with a firm yes, and in anticipation of something untoward I added, ‘back home we would be fighting for that’. ‘You Africans’, he said shaking his head, laughing.
Anyway, our roast turned out great. We devoured everything but I spared my husband the frowns and cringes so I did not chew all my bones, something that we also do back in Africa. Nothing goes to waste. After all, the parts we discard in the West are the ones full of nutrients. Just imagine the amount of vitamin A being wasted from not eating the liver, not to mention all the bone marrow, full of cells. Not so bad I reckon.
So there you have it. We eat our chicken whole. How about you, have your cultures crossed paths like us? What delicacies do you devour happily but others consider repulsive?
Have a great week. Until soon. Live Love Laugh – Eat x