If you are looking for a new way to refresh your family diet with something new but still familiar with chicken, we are here to tell you that pigeon meat will be a viable option.
So is pigeon meat good for consumption and how does it differ from the more popular type of poultry, chicken?
Let’s find the answer in this article.
What is pigeon meat?
Pigeon meat, which has a culinary term as squab, is the meat from pigeon birds, both wild and domesticated.
It is not as popular as other kinds of poultry meat like chicken, duck, or turkey, and is mainly consumed in some parts of the world, including France, Egypt, several Asian countries like China and Vietnam, Italy, North Africa, and the United States.
Pigeon meat tastes like dark meat chicken but is usually gamier and more earthy.
Despite its small size, pigeon meat is high in protein and rich in many essential nutrients, such as iron, phosphorus, vitamin B12, which benefit our brain and skin health as well as help promote blood circulation.
Pigeon meat can be cooked quickly in many ways.
Popular cooking methods can vary depending on the region.
For example, a popular dish made from pigeon meat in France is called à la crapaudine.
It is made by roasting the whole pigeon that is slaughtered and shaped to resemble a frog.
In Cantonese cuisine, they braise squab in soy sauce, rice wine, and other spices before roasting the bird.
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In Vietnam, people mince pigeon meat and stir-fry with fish sauce, garlic, and onion to serve with sticky rice.
What is chicken meat?
Chicken meat is the meat that comes from chicken, the most popular type of poultry.
Chickens are mainly raised for their eggs and meat rather than for being caught in the wild.
Chicken is a versatile kind of meat because you can make plenty of dishes from this ingredient.
A whole chicken can be stuffed and baked or slow-roasted in the oven.
It can also be rotisseried or boiled when being kept intact and served as a family-serving portion.
Chicken cuts like breasts, wings, thighs, or drumsticks can be baked, grilled, battered then deep-fried, or braised.
These dishes are usually paired with other side dishes like rice, mashed potatoes, French fries, coleslaws, or some toast.
Chicken breast is the most expensive cut of chicken because it is leanest and contains less fat and cholesterol than the dark meat counterpart.
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However, some people prefer the more flavorful taste of chicken legs rather than the mild flavor of white meat chicken breast.
What are the differences between pigeon meat vs chicken?
When it comes to comparing pigeon meat and chicken, there are numerous things to mention, from their outer looks, textures, tastes, prices, or nutrient values.
All will be broken into pieces in the table below:
|Size||Much smaller, only about one to two pounds||Larger, usually around five to seven pounds|
|Appearance||Darker in color (both skin and meat), more reddish||Lighter in color, more bright pink|
|Type when sold||Always sold the whole bird||Can be sold the whole bird or individual cuts (chicken breasts, chicken wings, drumsticks, or thighs)|
|Texture||Leaner and softer||Chewier|
|Taste||Similar to dark meat chicken, gamier||Milder, white meat chicken (breast) tastes bland, and dark meat chicken (thigh) is more flavorful|
|Nutritional content||Lower in fat and cholesterol||Higher in fat and protein|
|Price||Cheaper per pigeon because of its small size, but more expensive per pound||Cheaper per pound and since it is usually five to six times larger than a pigeon, the price for a whole chicken is higher|
|Popularity||Less popular, found in certain parts of the world like France, Egypt, China, Vietnam, America, and North Africa||More popular, can be found in any part of the world|
What are the similarities between pigeon meat vs chicken?
Despite many differences between pigeon meat and chicken, these two types of poultry meat also have two features in common:
1. Pigeon meat and chicken can be cooked in numerous ways
First, they can be cooked in numerous ways.
There are no limitations when it comes to cooking chicken or pigeon.
You can either bake, fry, grill, braise, stir-fry, or do anything with these meat ingredients you want and they all result in amazing dishes.
However, keep in mind that a cooking method that doesn’t add any more fat and even helps render the fat out of these birds (like baking or grilling) will be a better choice.
2. They are both nutritious options to substitute red meat
Another similarity between chicken and pigeon meat is that they are both nutritious.
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Chicken and pigeon meat are both white meat and they are well-known for being healthier options for red meat like pork, beef, or lamb.
Meat from these birds is packed with many essential nutrients, such as B-vitamins, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc, folate, and fatty acids.
All these substances can benefit our health in different ways, making chicken and pigeon meat ideal for daily consumption.
Which one is better?
The answer to the question of which one is better, pigeon or chicken, will vary depending on who you ask.
Some people prefer the gamier and flavorful taste of pigeon meat, while others prefer cooking a bland chicken breast cut with other ingredients and sauces so that it can absorb all the flavors from these elements.
In general, chicken and pigeon meat are both delicious and nutritious and are worth trying on any occasion.
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