Birds 6: Pounded Chicken (捶雞)

Pound a whole chicken until the bones are broken, then cook it in autumn sauce and wine. The household of Nanjing Prefect Gao Nanchang prepares this dish exceptionally well.

羽族單::捶雞
將整雞捶碎,秋油、酒煮之。南京高南昌太守家制之最精。

For this dish, you’ll want a flat faced meat pounder like this so you can break the bones but keep the skin and meat unharmed. (Credit: Nemo_bis)

Pounding a chicken and breaking its bones probably tenderises the meat and releases the bone marrow to flavour the chicken as it cooks. Still, what about the shards of bone that will be stuck everywhere in the meat after you pound the bird in? Is it enjoyable to have sharp spikes of chicken bone piercing the roof of one’s mouth and giving root canals? Is marrow really such a great flavouring agent that makes the dish worth the mouth wounds?

And although you can’t call it animal abuse if it’s already dead, I can’t help feeling that there is something particularly cruel and violent in bashing all the bones of a dead chicken.

This is truly a recipe for sadistic cooks and masochist diners.

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