East End Dispatch: It’s Chicken-Growing Season

Blue skies, but no more service.

The “Closed Til May” signs that have started sprouting at summer fish shacks around the Hamptons can be demoralizing, but leave it to Under the Willow on the Sag-Bridge Turnpike to remind us that there’s always something in season. The “Se Vendan Gallinas Vidas” sign (shown below) that went up in front of their roadside stand is just the latest evidence that micro-farmers Dale Haubrich and Bette Lacina continue their ongoing exercise to squeeze as much productivity (and food) from a few small pieces of land.

A few years back, citing a need to “slow down,” the hardworking couple decided to scale back their list of restaurant accounts and grow primarily for the Sag Harbor farmers market. There was a talk of a CSA too, but with the new Bay Burger next door created some people traffic, they revived their once-farmstand and have been adding to it ever since. They were among the first stand’s open (with greenhouse greens and foraged bamboo shoots) this spring and will probably be peddling dried tomatoes and winter squash until the first Nor’easters come ashore.

Among the new crops they are rolling out at Under the Willow farm stand in Sag Harbor.

Under the Willow’s sign makes us think of two things. First, the “How to Butcher a Chicken at Home” piece that appeared in the Summer 2010 issue of Brooklyn’s OVERFLOW magazine. It’s all you need to help you deal with your gallina vida. If you haven’t yet picked up OVERFLOW, we highly recommend it: we find a certain solidarity in its hyperlocal editorial mission to write for the people of South Brooklyn.

Beyond poultry preparation advice, we like the funky contributors page and feature on Brooklyn burlesque, “Gals of the Canal.”

Second, we are thinking of a few chicken roasting recipes from Evan Harris’s “No More Not Cooking” series for Edible East End. There was the roast chicken adventure with Roisin Bateman. And then there was the potpie with Cheryl Beddini. Two ideas for keeping your warm and fed from now til May.

Reader questions: Where are you getting your chicken, duck or other poultry these days? And what are you doing with it?

Brian Halweil

Brian is the editor at large of Edible East End, Edible Long Island, Edible Manhattan and Edible Brooklyn. He writes from his home in Sag Harbor, New York, where he and his family tend a home garden and oysters. He is also obsessed with ducks, donuts and dumplings.

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