world internet is full of helpful and handy cooking (and eating) tips and tricks.
Like the hack to help you find the most perfectly ripe avo every single time. Or the secret discovery to help you spread wasabi on your next lunchtime sushi roll. Or Jamie Oliver’s fail-safe trick to make the most delicious roast potatoes of all time.
Admittedly, some ‘hacks’ are more bizarre than others. But the latest cooking tip we’ve stumbled upon, from food writer Helen Rosner, is probably the weirdest we have ever seen.
You see, Helen, who is a correspondent for The New Yorker, swears by a popular bathroom tool to help her achieve maximum crispiness on the skin of her roast chicken.
It’s… a hair dryer. But not just any hair dryer: a Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer, which has a recommended retail price of AU$499.
Helen shared the ‘tip’ with her Twitter followers last week:
Happy snow day, I am using an astonishingly expensive hair dryer to remove all moisture from a chicken to maximize skin crispiness when I roast it. pic.twitter.com/ngtzmoOSHfAdvertisement
— Woman (@hels) March 21, 2018
Helen also shared images of the finished chicken (along with the complete recipe), and despite the bizarre method use to cook it, it actually looks pretty darn tasty:
Hello, gorgeous pic.twitter.com/pIFyganrBM
— Woman (@hels) March 21, 2018
But as strange as using a hair dryer to crisp up a chicken’s skin sounds, it’s actually not entirely unheard of.
Speaking to Allure, Helen said there is along history of using fans and heat to dry out the skin of meat before cooking.
LISTEN: If you squeeze you avocado to test the ripeness, you’re part of the problem. The Mamamia Out Loud team discuss the RIGHT way to test your avos. Post continues after audio.
“For crisp skin, whether you’re cooking a chicken or a duck or a fish, you want there to be as little water moisture as possible, which is sped up by a fan,” she said.
“And that’s all a hair dryer really is — a hand-held fan that you can pretty easily bring into the kitchen.”
Helen stresses that she wasn’t actually using the appliance to cook the chicken – “A lot of the most frustrating replies were from people who seemed to think I was using the dryer to cook the chicken” – but instead to dry out the skin and meat before popping it in the oven.
“[It] tells me a lot about their own kitchen skills if they don’t know how important it is to dry chicken before putting it in the oven,” she said.
And if you're thinking $499 is a rather large investment to make for a kitchen appliance that isn't strictly... kitchen-y... the food writer admitted she had purchased the hair dryer for it's original, intended purpose.
"I wish I could say I got it for cooking, but it started out life as a hair-only appliance," she said.
"The fact that it's way, way, way better at drying my hair than any other dryer I've tried is just a bonus.
"The fact that it helps my roast chicken be so great is a double bonus.
Helen also had one last message for those who critiqued her use of the beauty tool in the kitchen: "You know what? You can have a glittery pink manicure and cook a fucking terrific roast chicken."
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