Back when I was catering, we would get lovely chicken breasts that were about 6 oz. We would saute them or wok them or a light bake in the oven, and the meat was tender and you could cut it with a fork, no knives required.
Fast forward and the chicken industry today provides the largest breasts imaginable (some seem bigger than a turkey breast!). There are so large that there is now so much connective tissue and membranes running through the breasts that they are no longer tender and you need the sharpest
knife available to cut them!
Almost everyone I encounter hates these "monster" chicken breasts. Most people will butterfly
them for a yield of 3 from 1. Also, most people now pound the chicken breasts to not only thin
them out but also to somewhat shape them so they don't just look like a chunk.
In my home we rarely have chicken on the menu anymore. Neither my husband nor I enjoy this
stringy, tough meat. Instead, I will purchase a rotisserie chicken from the food store and make
chicken salad, or chicken pie, etc. out of that. Then I use the remaining, bones and all, and make
stock for a wonderful soup.
Today I had to clean chicken breasts for ninety guests for a funeral luncheon at the church tomorrow.
(I may never, ever eat chicken again after this!)
To each breast I got a yield of 3 or 4 portions. I was almost yearning for the old days when the
breasts were smaller. So much so that I called Tyson, the world's largest distributor of chicken.
When I explained to the woman in customer service that I was looking for small breasts and not
the huge things they are now selling to the public, she informed me they were no longer available and would not be available in the foreseeable future!
She did tell me she would forward my remarks and wishes for smaller chicken breasts to the corporate suits.
If anyone reading this is like me, wanting tender, edible chicken breasts, I urge you to call Tyson or Purdue (numbers are on internet) and make your wishes known.
When I was in Paris a few months ago, I took a cooking course and we used chicken breasts in the preparation of our meal. They were not the huge chicken breasts we have here in the United States. They were the normal size we used to have.
So, they are out there somewhere! Just not here on the East Coast!!!!