About a week after Christmas a surprise gift arrived for me in the mail. I opened the package telling myself, I hadn’t ordered any more books and was wondering what English Language publishing company had sent me another catalogue for 2013. Well to my surprise I discovered Fifty Shades of Chicken. I wasn’t sure what to make of it, but as I began to read I couldn’t help laughing hysterically. Who could have been so clever to put together a cookbook starring Mr. Shifty Blades and Ms. Chicken/Hen. That mystery has remained in tact because FL Fowler is anonymous. He or she is apparently an experienced chef in more than one way since the cooking language has been satirically and expertly manipulated to parallel the original books. I suddenly got a sick feeling that it could be EL James writing this one too, but as I read on I realized it was much too intelligent to be her. Fifty Shades of Chicken is sectioned into three parts: 1. The Novice Bird, 2. Falling to Pieces – chicken Parts and Bits, and 3. Birds Gone Wild – Advanced Techniques. Each section has tantalizing delectable recipes with seductive culinary stories like Jerked-Around Chicken, Mustard-Spanked Chicken, Cock au Vin,…Well you get the idea.
It makes for a hilarious read and some well cooked chicken. I can attest to the jerk chicken with spices, rum, chiles and lime and the roast chicken with brandy-vanilla butter recipes. They were absolutely succulent and easy to make. The writing is clever and humorous and definitely puts a beating on the original. It’s much more enjoyable. The pictures are pretty funny too of a muscular, bare-chested Mr. Shifty Blades. You never see his face. They also tried to make the chicken look human, which is a little creepy. The two-page introduction will suck you into this parody and before you know it you’ll be planning to cook one or more of the 50 recipes after you’ve read more than half the book. This book is great for anyone who loves chicken, loves the original story, hates the original like me, or just plain ol’ likes to cook. I’m already planning the next recipe to try – chicken fricassee with prosciutto, tomatoes, and sweet peppers. Holy crap that sounds good!
Title: Fifty Shades of Chicken a parody in a cookbook
Edition: Clarkson Potter/Publishers
My rating: * * * * 1/2
Favorite quote: “”Your whole control-freak foodie thing, it was because of her, that woman — Mrs. Child.” My mood has darkened. “Julia opened my eyes to many important things,” he explains. “In fact, I’d still be eating frozen dinners if it weren’t for her.” Frozen dinners? The thought of my poor, fucked-up foodie eating cold Tater Tots as a boy breaks my heart. Not taters, baby, never again!” (Fifty Shades of Chicken, p.80) This was difficult to choose because there are so many funny ones.