It all started with my yogi ripping out her kitchen while we were brainstorming how to feed her family for a few weeks. She said she had a "guy in the neighborhood" who was some kind of chicken -magician; he'd cook you a chicken dinner that you could pick up for $25. Neighborhood chicken enchantment? Sign me up. I called the guy for a Monday pickup.
Needless to say, Monday was a terror, and I was a little pissy that I forgot the address and found myself wandering a Minnetonka cul-de-sac contemplating who should get the first knock on the door. I pulled it out, Yoda-style, as I let my nose do the divining: there was only one house emitting a sweet, smoky smell.
All pissiness dissipated as I realized that man who answered the door was none other than Saleh Hamshari, a truly worthy chicken wizard, who used to own the now defunct Rotisseria. It hit me that I was getting Rotisseria chicken, the Peruvian charcoal-roasted chicken that made his Lake Street location a destination. This is the chicken that will lift the curtain on all supermarket chickens as mere rubbery, salty charlatans. I was giddy and selfishly psyched. All my little foodist friends in the city, who would drool buckets for this meal, how you liking my cul-de-sac life now?!
What's more, Saleh is only cooking for his neighbors while he bides his time before he can start selling his divine chickens out of the Cottagewood General Store. Saleh's kids happily shot me with cap guns as we talked about how he's excited to be starting a venture that lets him be near his home and family. He thinks he should be up and running very soon.
Needless to say, the smell in my car on the way home nearly forced me to pull over and cheat the fam on the better parts of the meal. The green beans were bright green, snappy, and bathed in garlic while the dill-flecked potatoes were solid with crunchy ends. And the chicken, juicy and moist, with crispy-dark, herb-plastered skin was nothing short of luscious. The vivid "Mean Green" hot sauce that comes with it walked that addicitve line between tart and hot, just like I remembered.