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Pope's Nose

That's my favorite part.

Of a chicken, anyway.

Roasted then sautéed in some EVOO, garlic and shallots.

What's your favorite part of a chicken?

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  1. Same. Actually, the whole backbone. But PN is definitely the best part. PS There is never enough of them.

    1. My favorite part is the gizzard, fried. And for some reason I haven't even thought of making these for probably two years.

      2 Replies
      1. re: DeppityDawg


        Fried, but not for long. It doesn't take long to cook gizzards, and if you go too far it's like eating a chunk of tire rubber.

        Love them...always have...fell in love before the age of 10.

        1. re: JayL

          So I take it you're not of the "boil until tender before frying" school? In that case, we can continue our journey together…

      2. skin, dark and crisp. Second place, thigh.

        1. Wings, then skin, then the a$$.

          I have a particular fondness for multiple of the latter skewered and grilled (salt or sauce, doesn't matter).

          1. My family has no idea that the oysters (sot ly laisse) even exist. They've never been served a bird with the oysters intact...they fall under cook's privilege.

            10 Replies
            1. re: sunshine842

              Same here, sunshine. The oysters are mine. Only mine.

              1. re: sunshine842

                The oysters are best eaten alone when you've taken the dirty dishes back to the kitchen and everyone thinks you're doing a bit of tidying up.

                1. re: Paprikaboy

                  Nope. While it's still hot and crispy -- because they just fell off of the carcass while I was carving the bird. :)

                  1. re: sunshine842

                    Sot-l'y-laisse translates to "the fool leaves it there," as unskilled carvers sometimes accidentally leave it on the skeleton.

                    1. re: GraydonCarter

                      yes, which makes it one of my favorite-ever food terms.

                      1. re: sunshine842

                        favorite part and now my favorite terms too

                        1. re: thimes

                          the poultry vendor at my local market is fascinated that we call it an oyster (comme huitres...)

                          The other side of the fence is so much more interesting!

                          1. re: sunshine842

                            It certainly is! Thanks! All my life I've been fascinated by colloquial expressions around the world, both ancient & modern.

                    2. re: sunshine842

                      "because they just fell off"

                      Sunshine, you're hilarious!!!!!!

                    3. re: Paprikaboy

                      I have to agree with Paprikaboy. The whole chicken tastes better after it has sat a while and you are picking off the carcass with your fingers.

                  2. Ever crisp up the one on a duck? Now THAT'S a schnozzola!

                    7 Replies
                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        Man, I can't wait to hear what it's called on an ostrich.

                            1. re: Cheese Boy

                              Struthio camelus proboscis. Everybody knows that.

                            2. re: ipsedixit

                              I've heard it called the parson's nose, but favor 'pope's nose', as that's what my dad (Catholic convert) called it. He loved the pope's nose.

                              1. re: EWSflash

                                First time in 49 yrs. I've heard His Holiness mentioned in this context; however, you can't listen to British comic songs of certain minimum age w/out the clergyman's reference...

                          1. In order: aforementioned nose. Oysters (boy, do I regret telling the kids about these!). Thigh Wings. Drumstick. Gizzard. Heart. Neck. Breast. Liver.

                            I don't think of the skin as a separate part, although I do love the skin, too.

                            1. I'm not giving my first choice, but the feet and blood are underrated.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: kaleokahu

                                Hello, how is the blood prepared, in a pudding? And I have tasted the chicken's foot before - gummy. I choose the drumstick best.

                                1. re: RCanin

                                  Pudding, sauces, sausages, terrines...

                              2. I have had the other parts. No white meat for me. Thank You. So I want to try chicken feet. Looks like it could be a favorite.Have you had them ?

                                1 Reply
                                1. same, but then the skin. like to roast a well-salted chicken until it's really crispy, then skin it. leave the naked bird for those (heathens) that would leave it behind anyway.

                                  5 Replies
                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                    I love the skin, but have found that when you follow a fairly low-fat diet as a habit, it's best to limit how much skin you eat -- unpleasant consequences may follow.

                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                      The skin (along with the wings and parson's nose) are also my favorite parts on a good roast chicken. Chicken skin yakitori is also a major favorite.

                                      1. re: JungMann

                                        Why are chicken, salmon, and turkey skin so good?

                                        1. re: EWSflash

                                          Protein is at its best when all crisped up. When my daughter was five or six, I always made sure the had crispy chicken skin. From seven or eight she would practically eat ALL the crispy skin from a small chicken. She also loved broccoli stalks and the very hard parts of vegetables, so I didn't worry about her eating concerns.

                                      1. My favorite part of the Thanksgiving Turkey is the Pope's Nose.

                                        Favorite part of the chicken is the Thigh.

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: Kholvaitar

                                          I'm with you. I have been know to eat the popes nose before we even begin carving.

                                          I also prefer chicken thighs to any other part of the bird

                                          1. re: Kholvaitar

                                            omg that picture brings back great memories of every Thanksgiving! i always carve bird and hid the popes nose for late night snackin. mmmmmm

                                            1. re: Kholvaitar

                                              Oh boy that brings back memories! I used to buy at a shop that sold turkey tails by the pound, can you imagine??? Sadly, no longer there.

                                            2. Skin, then oyster, then thigh. I love wings, but generally only if they're deep-fried separately from the rest of the chicken - I find they tend to get a bit stringy/dry when the chicken is roasted whole. DH likes the Pope's nose and drumsticks. No one is fighting over white meat in our house!

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: biondanonima

                                                DH gets the neck, I get the gizzard. It's the law.

                                                1. re: EWSflash

                                                  Also, I get the oysters, because DH doesn't know about them, and I'm not going to tell him. He loves chicken. He can live without knowing about the oysters.

                                                  1. re: EWSflash

                                                    Oh, shame on you, EWSflash. You could at least tell him about them and let him make his own decision.

                                              2. Boneless, skinless breast. There, I said it. Someone has to. Take away my Chowhound membership card. Tell me it's dry and flavorless and generally unworthy. But I like it. Every other part of the chicken is texturally unpleasant to me.

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: cookie monster

                                                  I have no problem with a boneless skinless breast once it has been battered, fried, topped with cheese and bacon, and placed on a bun with a good slathering of mayonnaise.

                                                  1. re: cookie monster

                                                    I find the chicken breast meat texturally unpleasant. It is frequently 'spongy' to me. (I'm skipping the dry part.)

                                                    My mother's best friend grew up on a farm in Nebraska. Their father, and consequently their mother, detested the legs and thighs of chickens. This lady grew up during the depression and they grew their own chickens. They fed the chicken legs and thighs to the hogs. I just cannot imagine it.

                                                    1. re: cookie monster

                                                      I pretty much disdained the breast, except maybe as Chicken Kiev (enough butter can make up for a lot!), until I discovered poaching it slowly and gently until it's got just the faintest blush throughout, more an off-white than pink. And then I slice it up, slather it with mayonnaise and slap some bread around it, because sandwiches is why chickens and turkeys have breast meat!

                                                      Favorites? A bit of skin - not a lot! - and those oysters, followed by a thigh. In fact, most of the chicken I've cooked over the past couple of years, both before and after Mrs. O went veggie, has been grilled or roasted thighs. I'll get one of the big packs of eight or ten, marinate them in olive oil with chili oil mixed in and some salt, then lay them out in my hinged wire grilling basket and lay on black and Aleppo pepper. Have a couple for supper, then it's chicken for lunch all week!

                                                    2. I love the Part That Goes Over the Fence Last. Other parts of any poultry I really like a lot are the gizzard and liver, also the neck meat whether roasted or boiled. Next I'd have to list the oysters and bone-in thigh.

                                                      1. I love me the chicken thighs!

                                                        1. My favorites, in order:

                                                          The wing tip - on smaller birds, I pretty much eat the bones and all.
                                                          The Liver - sauteed or deep fried, especially
                                                          The Pygostyle - which apparently, is very nutritious, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/04...

                                                          Truth is, I like it all, skinless breast meat being the least enjoyable.

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: MGZ

                                                            I don't uy t-the tail is nearly all fat.

                                                            1. re: MGZ

                                                              The Pygostyle...ahhh, such sophistication!

                                                              I'm a thigh-guy. Not only for the smooth, dark-hued and tender muscling under the chickenskin, but for those nubbly, gnarly little "thigh organs" dug out from behind the bone.

                                                              There must be a name for them!

                                                              1. re: Mike R.

                                                                I believe you're referring to the chicken 'oyster'.

                                                            2. In no particular order:

                                                              Wing Drummettes
                                                              Cartilage (Nankotsu)

                                                              1. Skin, drumstick, thigh, liver

                                                                1. Tough call, I do like chicken quite a bit.

                                                                  I guess it would be roughly in this order:


                                                                  1. wings
                                                                    tendons and gristle ("chewy bits")

                                                                    Come to think of it, I probably like the wings best because it's got the highest ratio of skin, tendons and gristle to meat.

                                                                    When I was a kid, one of the chicken's feet was always automatically mine, and my siblings had to fight over the other.

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Palladium

                                                                      Come to think of it, I probably like the wings best because it's got the highest ratio of skin, tendons and gristle to meat.

                                                                      I think it would actually be the feet.

                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                        Sadly, the chickens I buy now, unlike the ones my mother and aunts used to butcher themselves, don't come with their feet. Otherwise, yeah, the feet are awesome.

                                                                        Even weirder, chickens don't come with the bag of giblets either. I don't know whether this is a function of time or place. The last time I bought chickens was not only years ago, but also in the US. So I don't know if UK chickens never had giblets, or what.

                                                                    2. My favourite isn't actually part of the chicken. I prefer the little bits of caramelized juices that occurs where the bird hits the pan. Mmmmmmm.....

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                        1. #1 Gribenes>>>chicken skin that has had the fat rendered out while reducing in a pan with an onion until crisp. Picture attached....sometimes known as Jewish Popcorn

                                                                          #2 Pope's nose, or as we called it as kids Pope's Hat

                                                                          #3 Neck, and if the neck skin is available when prepping the bird, the neck skin is stuffed, sewn shut and roasted-called Helzel Picture attached

                                                                          #4 Wing

                                                                          In fact the only part of the chicken I do not like is the gizzard

                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                          1. re: bagelman01

                                                                            In fact the only part of the chicken I do not like is the gizzard

                                                                            What about the head? Do you like the head? I can't stand it personally.

                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                              feet go in the stock, I've never had an opportunity to eat chicken heads, but have had the head on roasted duck bought in the Chinese market and it was ok.

                                                                              1. re: bagelman01

                                                                                So do you like duck head better than chicken gizzard?

                                                                                Truth be told, I've actually had chicken (deep-fried) and it was not very pleasant.

                                                                                1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                  I have a big bag of chicken gizzards in the freezer. I boned 24 chickens about a week ago. Broke it down to boneless breasts for the wife and daughters. Boneless thighs for the dogs, some quarters for m, carcasses fro the soup or stock, BUT the gizzards will be cooked and served to the cats.

                                                                                  Not a single human household member or any of the 4 dogs will eat gizzards. Which is odd because both mother and mother-in-law love them.

                                                                          2. This thread reminds me of my mother-in-law, may she rest in peace. I could never, ever, take a turkey or chicken out of the oven without her fingers grabbing that 'pope's nose' while it sat on the counter to rest.
                                                                            At the time it used to irritate the hell out of me and now I'd give anything to have her there doing the same. Funny how life goes.
                                                                            For me...it's the chicken skin and the dark thigh dipped in the drippings.

                                                                            1. I believe that this is called "bonchiri" in Japanese, and a few good yakitori places will string up two or three on a skewer and grill them for you. Not cheap, but not so expensive.

                                                                              1. I too like the chicken and turkey tails. However, if that's the favorite part of the chicken, there's some slim pickens.

                                                                                I favor the chicken thighs in almost all preparations. Of course I like wings too. The leg is ok, I just don't like dealing with the tendons and breast meat is at the bottom.

                                                                                I really like smoked turkey tails. They are really good when making Hoppin' John.

                                                                                1. The oyster, which my guys don't know about so I get all of them, the gizzard, the thigh, and the drumstick.

                                                                                  1. When I roast a chicken, the 'Popes Nose' is the first thing I eat. I next share the oysters with my wife. I then think about finishing carving it and feeding anyone else that may be in the house.

                                                                                    1. Can anyone here tell me why boneless skinless chicken breasts shouldn't just go away?

                                                                                      They can be sort of useful, when not overcooked, if a lot of other flavors are added to them, but why so much love?

                                                                                      Marketing? Ability to charge a premium price? Low-fat idiocy? The silly perception that they are somehow "ladylike" to consume?

                                                                                      EDIT: Oh, and I guess I shouldn't leave out that there is a whole new generation who thinks that chicken shouldn't have bones...sigh.

                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: sandylc

                                                                                        They can be absolutely delicious when cooked right. And by right I mean pan-roasted -- you get a nice crispy outside, and cook just long enough for them to be done, not *overdone*.

                                                                                        Kosher chix breasts are my way to go b/c they're brined, but that shouldn't stop anyone from using regular breasts and brine them at home. It certainly makes for much juicier meat.

                                                                                        They are the perfect canvas for any number of sauces, a brandied mushroom cream sauce and piccata-style being two of my favorites.

                                                                                        I think they get a bad rep b/c most people just don't prepare them well. Overdone, dried-out, stringy meat with no crispy bits to speak of.

                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                          No breast??

                                                                                          That would mean the end of hotel banquet meals, the death of airplane food, and bodybuilders would starve all over the world.

                                                                                          Perish such thoughts.

                                                                                          We, here, think and speak of no such evils.

                                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                            Don't just speak of the evils you mentioned! Hurry them along!

                                                                                        2. re: sandylc

                                                                                          I use them a lot. They obviously aren't as flavourful as chicken cooked on the bone, but sometimes the boneless kind is just way easier. As long as it's good, air-chilled chicken that isn't overcooked, I like them.

                                                                                          1. re: sandylc

                                                                                            Oh sandylc, I know EXACTLY what you mean. I really don't like the monotonous texture of chicken breasts but 3 of my friends who are in their mid- 20s will absolutely not eat any chicken with bones in it. I'm in my early forties so wonder if it's a generation thing? Maybe it's a generation of people who are used to the uniform pappiness and softness of processed foods?

                                                                                            Wings are my absolute favourite part of the chicken.

                                                                                          2. Love the Pope's nose, the skin, the juicy breast meat, the liver. I love chicken.

                                                                                            1. Oysters
                                                                                              Pope's nose

                                                                                              9 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: CDouglas

                                                                                                Which part of the wing is the wingette? The part with one bone, two bones, or six thousand bones?

                                                                                                1. re: DeppityDawg

                                                                                                  The middle section with the ulna and radius. Also known as the "flat" or the "bow".

                                                                                                  1. re: CDouglas

                                                                                                    Yeah, I used to largely ignore that piece untill I leanred how to turn them into "lollipops" when roasting a bird. I now love them too.

                                                                                                  2. re: DeppityDawg

                                                                                                    The wingette has two bones, the drumette has one. The small piece with the tip is usually cut away for stock or soup in commercial kitchens.

                                                                                                    Back in the late 70s when I was in the catering business, we used to cut down the meat on the wingette to hang free, dip in a batter simialr to that used for sweet and sour chicken, deep fry and serve as passed appetizers with Chinese duck sauce>>chicken lollipops. The wingette is my favorite piece of the wing.

                                                                                                    1. re: bagelman01

                                                                                                      >> 'cut down the meat on the wingette to hang free' <<

                                                                                                      Bagelman01, did you keep both bones or was one removed?
                                                                                                      The two bones would look somewhat strange, no?

                                                                                                      1. re: Cheese Boy

                                                                                                        Jacques Pepin demonstrates making a 'lollipop' from the 'wingette'.

                                                                                                        Be sure to watch the entire video on how to debone a chicken.

                                                                                                        I have used this technique on both chicken and turkey with success.

                                                                                                        1. re: John E.

                                                                                                          I used to lollipop both the drums and the wingettes when I first introduced my kids to hot wings. Removed the smaller bone from the wingette and then inverted the meat over the top of the larger bone. Deep fried and mixed them with a mild mixture of Frank's and butter. Familiar and easy for kids to eat and somewhat less messy. Easier to dip as well.

                                                                                                        2. re: Cheese Boy

                                                                                                          we tried them both ways and found that leaving both bones, still attached at both ends gave a better gripping surface for guests
                                                                                                          It reminded me of the kiddie safety lollipop sticks that were a continuous loop so that the kid could'nt harm him/herself with a stick end

                                                                                                          1. re: bagelman01

                                                                                                            Thanks Bagelman.
                                                                                                            Those two bones resemble a closed safety pin.

                                                                                                  3. Where I live (in Ontario, Canada), whole chickens come minus neck and all the giblets. Very frustrating.

                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: Cilantra

                                                                                                      Hmm, I don't believe the Pope's Nose counts as "giblets".

                                                                                                      1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                                        No, the Pope's Nose isn't giblets, but then, the discussion was about "your favourite part of the chicken," and several people mentioned the gizzard/liver/kidney. Oh, and the neck (which of course also isn't in the "giblets" category.)

                                                                                                        1. re: Cilantra

                                                                                                          and it's all typically lumped under "offal"

                                                                                                          1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                            Which some people are convinced is an alternative spelling of "awful."

                                                                                                    2. I love breaking down a whole roasted chicken and devouring all the nasty bits,the crispy skin the neck, pope's nose,backbone and all the juicy stuff that clings to them. I could give two farts about the breasts..
                                                                                                      Dark meat all the way!

                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: petek

                                                                                                        "Dark meat all the way!"

                                                                                                        Well, that's where the flavor is. Apparently, Petek, you do know your stuff.

                                                                                                        1. re: petek

                                                                                                          After studying your avatar for a brief (or lengthy) moment, I think it's clear to us that "upper parts" are not what you're after. It's the TAIL that you prefer. ;- )

                                                                                                          1. re: Cheese Boy

                                                                                                            Only when it comes to poultry.... :)

                                                                                                        2. While l do like the oyster and the thigh, l do not eat breast meat, the poor unmentioned heart is my true love. Looks like me and linguafood get them all.

                                                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                                                                                            I blame Bill Cosby for the heart's relatively low position on my list.

                                                                                                            1. re: Delucacheesemonger

                                                                                                              not til you get past me.

                                                                                                              If I'm not making gravy, the livers and heart are mine.

                                                                                                              If it's gravy, they go to the dog.

                                                                                                              1. re: sunshine842

                                                                                                                You don't add the heart and liver to the gravy? Shame.

                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                  sometimes yes, sometimes no. If I've got a houseful coming, I'll just buy giblets to make gravy...and when there's plenty of hearts and livers, there's usually more than you can gracefully chop/blend into the gravy.

                                                                                                            2. I do wish Trader Joes would sell thighs in their proper form -- bone-in, skin on.

                                                                                                              1. We go through about a dozen Turkeys a day, so we sell plenty of the tails, which are undeniably the best part as far as I'm concerned. For those guests who have never eaten one, we explain that they are the bacon of the bird. We sometimes have to buy extras by the case, and when we do they are enormous -- on the order of a half pound per tail. We do them Smoked, Roasted and Buffalo Style. And if you haven't had one Buffalo Style, you have not lived.

                                                                                                                Other great and neglected parts are, as noted above, the Oyster, which our cooks usually do reserve for themselves unless I am in the house, and a fantastic part that's usually too small to pay attention to on a chicken but is fabulous on a Turkey, which is the Scapula Meat, that beautiful cutlet-like piece where the long thin shoulder blades run down the upper back behind the wings. You can actually buy these by the case as well, and we often run a Piccata or Turkey Fried Steak special and they sell out in minutes.

                                                                                                                There's another thread on Turkey Tails and on it is a photo of doing them braised, I believe.