There's an art to choosing the right chicken cuts and how best to cook them. Each part of the chook has its own area of expertise and it's up to you to let it show off a bit. If you don't make the best choice then all the effort you've gone to in helping her shine may turn into a disappointing plate of boring, dry or just plain meh.
Let's start with those sexy legs. Thighs and drummies are indestructible really so I use them for most things, curries, BBQ, crumbed nibble bits, tagines, pasta type sauces. They hold their form and don’t go stringy and dry unless you really cook the life out of them.
SIDE NOTE: Yes it has more fat content so trim off what you’re happy with. Fat is not the evil slime ball it’s been made out to be. The fats you need to remove from your diet are the industrial seed oils that have been heavily processed, refined and bleached back to a pleasant golden colour in time to go on the shelf. These oils are inflammatory and contribute to the development of disease - so don’t use them! Healthy animals have healthy fat. Sick and intensively farmed animals store the crappy chemical foods and toxins in their fat so don’t eat them or their fat!
Breast is best steamed or poached as it gets dry very easily. It’s skinny down one end to the other so slicing it is a good option before cooking. Lightly pan fry or just make your sauce and drop the chicken in the sauce to poach for only a few minutes. Testing is always the best option and remember that meat continues to cook as it rests especially if it’s in a hot pot or sauce.
Cooking chicken thighs on the bone gives you the added benefits of the goodness and flavour coming out of the bones plus you can then keep them for stock.
When you roast a chicken pull the meat off the bone and keep them in the freezer for your own stock. When you have a big bag full - pop them in a big pot or the slow cooker to make your own stock.
Finally, always buy the best chook you can afford. Free range, organic at best. There are some that are more free range than others so check out your local supplier. The idea is that animals that are kept in wide spaces, allowed to roam and forage for most of the day, are healthier, require less medication and the end result goes in your belly and your bloodstream.
Food for thought!