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May 10, 2016

A Chicken in Every Pot

Harry M. Covert

The chickens are coming home to roost, at least within the friendly educated confines of Frederick’s city limits. Those who love fowl play are all excited now, clucking with joy.


Personally, raising the soon-to-be McNuggets, southern fried delectable and spicy Buffalo wings has never appealed to me. As a boy I left that to my grandparents and uncles. They were experts. Being a Kentucky Colonel, or Louisiana Popeyes, or other popular kitchen maestros is always appealing. The public cookeries weren’t needed because almost every dinner table everywhere could be described as the crème-de-la-crème, chicken this and chicken that.


After lots of debate throughout Frederick, the Board of Alderman acceded to the people. They agreed to allow chickens to be raised in backyards throughout the city.


I can imagine neighborhoods offering sidewalk egg sales for themselves, their churches, their scouts, their every organization, and their holidays. Homemade egg recipes back in the order of the day.


It’s probably a good idea. It took lots of conversation to get the city ordinances to approve “a chicken for every pot.” I don’t remember seeing any protestations of the move from the professional food merchants.


There are lots of fantastic family chefs with numerous recipes. There will be many good tasty stories everywhere. It won’t be surprising to see a splurge in backyard picnics, competitions and neighborhood get togethers. Politicians, and those who want to be public servants, will be having some good times.


Raising chickens is no easy task. The health department will be busy inspecting conditions for cleanliness and healthiness. I know there will be some nosey neighbors who may be a bit jumpy spying on their neighbors. That’s life.


There is a way to handle backyard investigators who may be patrolling, hopefully not in a covert manner; let the poultry wizards keep on hand lots of prepared fried chicken legs, breasts, spicy wings and such asides as potato and macaroni salads on the tables. Save the chicken necks for crabbing.


Let’s admit it, in spite of some worrisome ordinances enacted by officer holders, frequently they come up with popular and significant rules. This local chicken ordinance is educational for adults and children.


While we’re on the subject, backyard chicken raising could help feed lots of homeless and hungry people. I recommend that be done as a community effort. Also, while money is tight among the populace, let the mayor and aldermanic deciders encourage “victory gardens.” Vegetables grow fast, and while local grocers and farmers markets are valuable and good, backyard growing is healthy and tasty.


This correspondent will not be farming in the backyard. I’ll leave that to others. I have enjoyed lots of chicken pot pies and the spicy tenders.


The day came when I discovered oyster pot pies, lobster sub sandwiches, soft shell crabs and Bertha’s Mussels, plus, soft-boiled, hard-boiled, fried, scrambled, omelets and deviled eggs to name a few.


Now if only the mayor can come up with backyard facilities with touches of the Chesapeake Bay.


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