Friday, November 17, 2006

John M. Scalzi's Weekend Assignment #139: White Meat v. Dark Meat

John M. Scalzi's Weekend Assignment #139: White Meat v. Dark Meat

Weekend Assignment #139: It's time for Thanksgiving dinner! Which do you prefer -- white meat, or dark meat? Explain your answer. Because it seems that most people have a preference one way or another, and sometimes they can get testy about it.

For those of you who for some reason disdain the whole turkey scene, answering "neither" is acceptable, but you need to explain why and offer an alternate dish for consumption.

Extra credit: Being Thanksgiving, note one thing you've been thankful for in 2006.

Dear John,

I see we share the same predilection for “the bird” -- the dark meat, and for many of the same reasons. Due to it's higher fat content, coupled with the average position most cooks choose to roast their birds, dark meat tends to be moister, less over cooked and therefore more palatable. In addition, I suspect the legs and thighs of the bird harbor more tryptophane in their muscles than the muscles of the breast and the ridiculously atrophied “wings” of the modern farm-raised turkey. And it sure is nice to have less competition for the dark meat from the hungry hoardes. I was raised with two brothers, competition for the good bits was always keen.

Don't overlook the “oyster”, either. That's the turkey loin located in a pocket or hollow in the pelvic girdle, just ahead of the “Pope's Nose” or tail. It is in the middle on the scale of white to dark, but because of it's location on the back is often the moistest and most flavorful bit of the roasted bird. Yum!

Here's hoping you have your fill of three bean salad, pureed squash, smashed potatoes and gravy and all the turkey you can eat. Leave room for pie and why don't you give that drumstick to Athena this year. There's something about watching a kid gnaw on the drumstick for a half hour or so...


Extra Credit: I'll be thankful if the year manages to come to an end without more deaths of close friends and family, with no more big surprises that result in the catastrophic demise of our bank account and with our health and sanity intact. It's been a rough year in a rough decade and I'll be glad for some respite. Have a Happy Thanksgiving, y'all.

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