Sunday, February 21, 2010

The story of the one legged chicken and the three legged one...

Bodies writhing... Hands thrust in the air... Shaking to the beat... People shouting... No I am not at a rock concert but a charismatic Christian service and everyone is into the spirit of things. Except me! Somehow I feel strangely removed from everything that is happening around me. My mind is wandering.... to Roast Chicken. Yep the special soy glazed roast chicken from the China Doll restaurant which I ordered the other day and which was absolutely yummy. And yes you are right this post was hatched in a church when everyone else was praying I was surreptitiously typing away...

Actually these are two completely unrelated stories but it just happened that while I was thinking about the first little incident with the china doll roast chicken the other came to mind and I thought it would be nice to share both with you. Also the title really fits beautifully doesn't it?

Well firstly if you don't know what China Doll is you should do so immediately? It is a restaurant within a restaurant. A sub division of Chinese dragon and offers a completely new variety of cuisine instead of the traditional “Sri lankan Chinese” which we all love. The menu is eclectic with a variety of fusion dishes which are out of this world. You should check their face book page. By the way their Laksa is amazing and great value for money when you consider it feeds four comfortably.

Well it all started when I met there MD who was waxing eloquent about the glories of their roast chicken. In fact he agreed to send me one complimentary, but I decided to order one myself because I did not want to be under obligation. And that is how this little incident started. I ordered one full roast chicken but when I went to pick it up it was in a medium sized plastic container which they generally serve their salads in.. It seemed awfully small for a full chicken I doubled check with the waiter and he insisted it was a full chicken. And on this particular day they did not have a detailed invoice for me to double check what they had charged me for? Anyway when I went home I wanted to make sure that I was not taken for a sucker and examined the dish thoroughly and it did not seem like a full chicken for me specially if it fitted into a container that size. And then I had an eureka moment because I finally found the evidence that I had been wronged. Yes the chicken had only one leg. Of course I brought it to the notice of the management and the chef called me and insisted it was one full chicken they had given me. I had to finally ask him if they order a new breed of chicken with only one leg? Somehow that statement broke the tension and everyone started laughing and it was a big joke and we hung up. It was after that I realized that I have cut the line without getting a solution to my missing half chicken.

Well when I was thinking about the one legged chicken another story concerning a chicken with an extra leg came to mind. For this story we have to go back in time to the old Sri Lanka of the seventies where there were no large broiler farms and if you said super market people would have a blank look on their face. This was the time when Nescafe was considered more posh than brewed coffee and Toblerone and Cadbury was considered a luxury. Those days chicken was considered a luxury. A special meat cooked only when someone important came to visit. And if you cooked two chickens for a meal where one could have been eaten sparingly it was considered a status symbol. Add to this scenario an aunt and uncle of mine who were filthy rich but were stingy as hell. People you would describe as utter “Kuna’s”. Well they had invited some of the family members for lunch and in order to impress chicken was served. Of course my aunt wanted to do more than just impress. She wanted to drive in the point that they were much better off than those gathered around the table. She wanted people to know that she had cooked more than one chicken for the meal but on the other hand she was too stingy to waste another chicken on the not so important relations. She did come up with an innovative solution where she could literally have the cake and eat it. What she did was cut one leg off the second chicken and add it into the chicken curry. And when the chicken was being served telling everyone around loudly “Please serve yourself the third leg there is sufficient chicken for everyone” hoping that with these words everyone would know there was more than a single chicken cooked for them and be suitably impressed. But of course there wasn’t enough to feed the hungry lot. And definitely not enough for seconds which seemed strange considering that two chickens had been slaughtered. When we realized no more extra chicken was going to be brought in from the kitchen it suddenly dawned on us what the smart old lady had been up to! So one of my uncles very innocently asked my aunty “Are you sure that you have not cooked a three legged chicken by mistake instead of two?” Oh gosh you should have seen the old ladies face when she realized that we had cottoned on to her little secret…. It was priceless.

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