We support heritage breeds because they serve as an important role in the preservation of genetic diversity. Heritage chicken breeds are typically a good choice for a backyard or homestead flock. Heritage breed animals often produce more flavorful meat. But cooking heritage chicken is different than cooking modern industrial chicken. Heritage chicken usually requires a slower, moister cooking technique. The Heritage Chicken Cooking Competition is a great initiative to get people involved with heritage breeds and the foods they provide — plus, there's a $1,000 grand prize. The following information is provided courtesy Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch.
The Heritage Chicken Cooking Competition is an effort to educate and raise consumer awareness about heritage chickens. The competition will begin with selecting the best recipe created from four different categories of preparation: whole bird, cut up, de-boned and barbecued. Initially, 12 semi-final entrees will be selected from throughout the United States for semi-final judging. The four winning finalists (one from each category) will be invited to prepare their recipes for grand prize judging. One potential prize winner will be awarded from each of the four categories. Three semifinalist will receive $500, and one person will be selected out of the four winning categories as the grand prize winner to receive $1,000.
All entries must be postmarked or e-mailed no later than midnight, March 11, 2010, to be considered for the contest. Contest rules and the entry form are available on the Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch site.
The grand prize winner will be announced at a banquet on April 17, 2010. The banquet will be hosted by chef Renee Kelly and her staff. Students from the The Art Institutes–Kansas City will present their poultry food designs for the award banquet. Separate award money and recognition outside the main contest will be given to the students of The Art Institutes-Kansas City for best team culinary presentation. The banquet will be held at Kelly’s Caenen Castle in Shawnee, Kan.
P. Allen Smith, author and host of P. Allen Smith Garden Home will be a guest speaker for the banquet. Molly O’Neill, food writer, author of four cookbooks and previous food critic for The New York Times, will participate in the event. Notable chef, cookbook author, restaurant owner and radio host Jasper Mirabile will also participate.
Since 2002 Frank Reese’s Kansas-based company has grown to produce over 10,000 heritage turkeys a year and as many as 3,000 heritage chickens a month that are sold throughout the United States. They now offer distinct breeds selected for specific culinary uses. Today many of the endangered heritage breeds of poultry have been revived, thanks to the efforts of Reese and those involved in promoting education of heritage poultry and its value to the consumer. A driving force of Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch is to educate, raise public awareness and increase healthy poultry consumption.
Photo courtesy Good Shepherd Poultry Ranch