I'm a big fan of buying whole chickens. My corner store uses whole chickens as a loss leader. This little baby is a 4.2 lb chicken which I bought for $.79 per pound. With the "club card", I bought it for $3.32. A whole chicken. When I see it at this price point, I buy several for the freezer.
I'm not tempted by the prettily packaged 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts and you shouldn't either. If you are at all intimidated by the idea of cutting up a chicken, let me tell you a story or a couple stories. First story: My Grandparents on both sides were farmers in NW Oklahoma during the depression. There were years they had zero income, none at all. They lived off what the farm could produce and what they could barter for for complete years. Next time you think you've got something to complain about, think about that. About this time in the story, my step kids are rolling their eyes and checking their watches, but wait! They aren't here right now. For the rest of you, this is going to get more interesting.
My paternal grandfather was Miles Bennett. His cousin was J.D. Decker. The Deckers farmed down the road close to Orient, OK. One hard year, the Bennetts ate their chickens for food. Now, they had no eggs.
If you've never been hungry, think about that. They had little children and they ate their chickens because they were hungry and didn't know what else to do. Do you currently have something to complain about?
So for a year or two, the Bennetts bought eggs from the Deckers until they could get back on their feet and get laying hens again. So the story goes, this crate was taken to the Deckers who put eggs into it and sent it home to the Bennetts. Yes, if you are a left brainer like me, there are a couple flaws in the story, but that is the story that was told in my family over and over and over again until you just want to scream. If you look carefully, my aunt placed Easter egg basket grass and a plastic chicken in this crate. She gave it to me upon the death of my paternal grandmother along with a little family jewelry and made me promise that if I took the crate I would leave the chicken. So here's to you, Grandma and Grandpa Bennett and Aunt Vera. And thanks for all you taught me.
Now, story 2: wait for it, I have a million. At Grandma Bennett's funeral, the old ones got together with Pastor and told some stories about her. Pastor told the stories at the service. I'll always remember Pastor saying that Grandma was known for her hospitality. In the time it would take for her to see new guests coming over the hill, she could kill, pluck and cook a chicken and have her famous chocolate cake in the oven.
Now, for you left brainers, I have a cook book that Grandma Bennett gave me that supposedly has her famous chocolate cake recipe in it. She gave it to me new when I was about 12 or 13. I still have it and have blogged about it. She moved off the farm when I was a baby upon the death of Grandpa Bennett. But you get the story and it makes me feel warm and fuzzy, actually it empowers me that I could do anything, even if it is totally boggus.