70 Years Ago a Recipe Was Created in Ithaca That Would Make Summer More Delicious
Seventy years ago, a professor at Cornell University in Ithaca would publish a piece that would change summer in upstate New York and in the most delicious of ways.
In his piece, called "Barbecued Chicken and Other Meats," Robert C. Baker laid out a recipe for a simple vinegar-based sauce that could be used to turn chicken raised for meat rather than eggs into something absolutely delicious. Robert C. Baker even went so far as to include plans for how to make a fireplace on which to cook the chicken.
Up until the time that Robert C. Baker released his paper, most Americans didn't regularly eat chicken. The meat of choice at that time was generally beef and pork. The reason that Robert C. Baker focused on the chicken is that he was an agricultural extension specialist and a huge chunk of his job centered on swaying Americans to consider eating more chicken.
Robert C. Baker spent his life thinking up creative recipes for chicken including inventing chicken hot dogs, chicken bologna, and then, the staple found on the plate of every small child - a prototype of the chicken nugget. But, it was his Cornell Chicken Barbecue sauce that changed everything.
Robert C. Baker's recipe for Cornell Chicken Barbecue sauce is a pretty simple one. It includes cooking oil, vinegar, salt, poultry seasoning, pepper, and an egg.
Meathead Goldwin is an American food writer, chef, website publisher, and member of the Barbecue Hall Of Famebarbecue. Describing the popularity of Robert C. Baker's Cornell Chicken Barbecue recipe, he said not only was it delicious but that, "Every fund-raising event, every fire department cookout, every little league barbecue, must serve this recipe or nobody would come. "
Summertime in upstate New York wouldn't be complete without chicken barbecue and in a way, we have Robert C. Baker of Cornell to thank for all of the memories we've made around the grill.