Patrick Holford BSc, DipION, FBANT, NTCRP is a leading spokesman on nutrition in the media, specialising in the field of mental health. He is the author of over 30 books, translated into over 20 languages and selling several million copies worldwide, including The Optimum Nutrition Bible, The Low GL-Diet Bible, Optimum Nutrition for the Mind and Food is Better Medicine than Drugs.
Patrick started his academic career in the field of psychology. He then became a student of two of the leading pioneers in orthomolecular medicine and psychiatry – the late Dr Carl Pfeiffer and Dr Abram Hoffer. In 1984 he founded the Institute for Optimum Nutrition (ION), an independent educational charity, with his mentor, twice Nobel Prize winner Dr Linus Pauling, as patron. ION has been researching and helping to define what it means to be optimally nourished for the past 32 years and is one of the most respected educational establishments for training nutritional therapists. At ION, Patrick was involved in groundbreaking research showing that multivitamins can increase children’s IQ scores – the subject of a Horizon documentary in the 1980s. He was one of the first promoters of the importance of zinc, antioxidants, essential fats, low-GL diets and homocysteine-lowering B vitamins and their importance in mental health and Alzheimer’s disease prevention.
Patrick is founder of the Food for the Brain Foundation and director of the Brain Bio Centre, the Foundation’s treatment centre that specialises in helping those with mental issues ranging from depression to schizophrenia. He is in the Orthomolecular Medicine Hall of Fame and is an honorary fellow of the British Association of Nutritional Therapy, as well as a member of the Nutrition Therapy Council and the Complementary and Natural Healthcare Council. He is also Patron of the South African Association of Nutritional Therapy.
Other books by Patrick Holford
Balance Your Hormones
Boost Your Immune System (with Jennifer Meek)
Burn Fat Fast (with Kate Staples)
Delicious, Healthy, Sugar-Free (with Fiona McDonald Joyce)
Food is Better Medicine than Drugs (with Jerome Burne)
Hidden Food Allergies (with Dr James Braly)
How to Quit Without Feeling S**t (with David Miller and Dr James Braly)
Optimum Nutrition Before, During and After Pregnancy (with Susannah Lawson)
Optimum Nutrition for the Mind
Optimum Nutrition for Your Child (with Deborah Colson)
Optimum Nutrition Made Easy
Say No to Arthritis
Say No to Cancer (with Liz Efiong)
Say No to Heart Disease
Six Weeks to Superhealth
Smart Food for Smart Kids (with Fiona McDonald Joyce)
Solve Your Skin Problems (with Natalie Savona)
Ten Secrets of 100% Healthy People
Ten Secrets of Healthy Ageing (with Jerome Burne)
Ten Secrets of 100% Health Cookbook (with Fiona McDonald Joyce)
The Alzheimer’s Prevention Plan (with Shane Heaton and Deborah Colson)
The Chemistry of Connection
The Feel Good Factor
The Homocysteine Solution (with Dr James Braly)
The 9-day Liver Detox (with Fiona McDonald Joyce)
The Low-GL Diet Cookbook (with Fiona McDonald Joyce)
The Low-GL Diet Counter
The Low-GL Diet Bible
The Optimum Nutrition Bible
The Optimum Nutrition Cookbook (with Judy Ridgway)
The Perfect Pregnancy Cookbook (with Fiona McDonald Joyce and Susannah Lawson)
500 Health and Nutrition Questions Answered
Published by Piatkus
Copyright © 1999, 2017 Patrick Holford
The moral right of the author has been asserted.
Extract from Digestive Wellness by Elizabeth Lipski (McGraw-Hill) © Elizabeth Lipski. Reproduced with permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted, in any form or by any means, without the prior permission in writing of the publisher.
The publisher is not responsible for websites (or their content) that are not owned by the publisher.
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Although the nutrients and dietary changes referred to in this book have been proven safe, those seeking help for specific medical conditions are advised to consult a qualified nutrition therapist, doctor or equivalent health professional. The recommendations given in this book are solely intended as education and information, and should not be taken as medical advice. Neither the author nor the publisher accept liability for readers who choose to self-prescribe.
Many people have helped to research, check and edit this book. My special thanks go to Antony Haynes for his help regarding digestive infections; to Erica White for her expertise and contribution to the section on candidiasis; to Chris Newbold for helping me with the research on probiotics; to Dr Gill
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nal life. When I started to recommend fat to my own patients, I saw some of them lose one hundred or more pounds and even reverse type 2 diabetes. I had never witnessed such dramatic transformations before.
I began including more fats in my diet as well, and I noticed a shift in my own health. After getting off processed carbs and increasing my fat intake, not only did I have more mental focus and clarity, but I lost fifteen pounds and my love handles turned into a six-pack without my exercising any more than I had previously. I’m now eating more calories and losing more weight, and I eat fat with every single meal! For breakfast I’ll often have an omelet or a frittata cooked in grass-fed butter or a smoothie made with nuts and seeds, coconut milk, and/or an avocado. For lunch I might have a big salad with wild fatty fish like salmon or sardines, plus avocados and pumpkin seeds with plenty of extra-virgin olive oil, and for dinner, grass-fed lamb (keeping the fat on it, of course) paired with different veggies and more olive oil on top. The satisfaction of eating increases dramatically when you cook your food with real, healthy fats. Fat is what makes food taste good.
With the help of my friend Chef Frank Giglio, I’ve put together more than 175 deeply satisfying and delicious recipes to share with you. You can use these recipes before, during, and after your twenty-one-day Eat Fat, Get Thin Plan, which you can find in my book Eat Fat, Get Thin and in Part II of this book. I’ve also included recipes that are specifically designed to be used after the twenty-one-day plan. They fall into what I like to call the Pegan Diet. The Pegan Diet, which I explain in Chapter 4 , combines the best of the Paleo and vegan diets. It is the way that I eat 90 percent of the time, and I’ve never felt better. I’m sharing the recipes in this book because I want everyone to feel this way—satisfied, satiated, and full of energy and vitality.
Let’s take back our kitchens and take back our health. It all starts in these pages.
So many of you have already experienced monumental changes in your health. Some of you may just be getting started, and others might be looking for a reset to get back on track. Wherever you are on this journey, I hope this cookbook serves as inspiration to continue to seek the best version of yourself. In these next chapters, I’ll give you my best tips for creating a safe and joyful space for healing and thriving, and we’ll recap the Eat Fat, Get Thin Plan, so that you feel fully prepared to enthusiastically and easily take control of your health.
Seven Big Ideas
Before we get started with the Eat Fat, Get Thin Plan, I want to take you through some key principles that have helped me and my patients on the journey to optimal health. You might be familiar with some of these concepts, and in that case, consider them helpful reminders. Some are related to food, others are more about emotional health, but all are necessary on the path toward vibrant well-being. I call them the Seven Big Ideas.
BIG IDEA 1: FOOD IS NOT LIKE MEDICINE—IT IS MEDICINE
Nothing beats the true healing power of real food. Normally, by the time patients come to a Functional Medicine doctor like me, they’ve exhausted what conventional medicine offers. Conventional medicine is by far the best for acute illness. But food is the best medicine for chronic disease. It works faster and better, and is cheaper than medication. And all the side effects are good ones. Remember Joanne’s story—off insulin, diabetes medication, and blood-pressure medication in four days after fifteen years of struggling. No drug can do what (real) food can do.
Nutrigenomics is the idea that food is information and that that information is always communicating with our genes, turning on messages that foster health and/or disease. If every part of each food we eat contains valuable information for our bodies that affects gene expression, then why, for so long, were we obsessed with focusing only on one tiny part of the food we consume: the number of calories? Calories matter, but far less than the information or instructions in food that control our genes, hormones, immune system, enzymes, and even our gut flora or microbiome with every single bite.
Imagine what message you’re sending your body when you eat nutritionally empty foods such as cheeseburgers, potato chips, French fries, and cupcakes. Compare this to the message sent by plant foods, which are packed with powerful antioxidants and phytochemicals that your body needs. Unfortunately, there are some foods, like fat, that continue to be demonized even though they send important and very powerful messages to our cells.
A decade ago, when I started to really dig into the research on dietary fats, I found undeniably clear evidence that in the absence of refined suga
banana bread recipe, moo shu, what is vegan food, christening cakes for girls, chicken samosa,
name, I chose Maangchi, ‘hammer’ in Korean: a cool name for a tough girl.”
A few days later I found that people had started posting comments. They had questions about ingredients. They wanted to know what kind of hot pepper flakes and soy sauce I used, and where they could buy them. They also gave me a lot of encouragement. But mostly they wanted to know when my next video was coming. I filmed and edited one for doenjang-jjigae—a fermented bean paste stew with shrimp, tofu, and vegetables—and uploaded it about ten days later. And ever since then, I’ve been posting Korean cooking videos regularly to YouTube, which has brought together all my lifelong passions: cooking, teaching, meeting new people, and learning about different cultures. Inundated with comments, e-mails, and questions, I no longer had time for video games. My good friend Dave—now my husband—helped me create my own website, www.maangchi.com, and I put up my videos there, as well as recipes and information and photos of hard-to-find Korean ingredients. The site became a forum where everyone could talk to each other and chime in with their own answers to other readers’ questions about Korean cooking. Eventually my site grew so popular that I was able to leave my job, move to New York City, and become Maangchi full-time.
maangchi and friends
The readers of my website live all over the world. Many have wandered into a Korean restaurant, been stunned by tastes they have never tried before, and want to re-create them at home. Some have traveled to Korea, loved the food, and want to learn how to prepare it at home. Others are second-generation Koreans who grew up with their mothers’ authentic Korean food but never learned how to make it. Some are Korean adoptees who left their homes when they were very little. Some married into Korean families or adopted Korean children.
Their reasons for wanting to learn how to cook Korean food are incredibly varied, but they all come with tons of questions: Can I make my own hot pepper paste? How long does kimchi last in the fridge? What is jjajangmyeon? What dishes can I make if I’m a vegetarian? A Muslim? Can I make my own rice flour with rice? What’s a good substitute for fish sauce?
These questions were understandable. Few Korean recipes had been adapted for English speakers. The descriptions on restaurant menus can be confusing and often the waitstaff doesn’t speak English. It’s hard for Westerners to navigate a Korean grocery store if there even is one nearby—because English translations on packages are often inaccurate. Sometimes when I posted a recipe, I turned out to be the first person on the Internet to mention the dish’s English name, let alone explain how to make it.
“Cook your way through this book, and you will discover the wonderful variety that exists in traditional Korean cuisine.”
However, my job “translating” Korean cuisine for a Western audience is made much easier by the versatility and diversity of my nation’s cooking. Because of the country’s geography, Koreans have always had a variety of ingredients to choose from and have been resourceful and creative with substitutions. The country was isolated for long periods of time, so imported foodstuffs were few and “eating local” has been a way of life for centuries. Moreover, we’ve been practicing some of America’s favorite ways of cooking—marinating, skewering, and grilling or barbecuing meat—since the beginning of recorded time. In addition, Buddhist influence gave rise to many vegetarian dishes.
Cook your way through this book, and you will discover the wonderful variety that exists in traditional Korean cuisine. There is lots of seafood, the result of a country bounded on three sides by water. We love beef and pork, but our cooking has always featured plenty of vegetarian food, a legacy of our history as mountain foragers and Buddhists. Koreans are famous for their spicy dishes, but we also cook lots of mild ones. We love casual street food, but we are also proud of our refined and beautiful Royal Court cuisine. Always we are mindful of the connection between food and good health. Long before scientists discovered the healthfulness of fermented foods, we were consuming kimchi by the gallon. Recipes like Seaweed Soup and Ginseng Candy are prized for their rejuvenating properties as well as their flavor.
Kimchi and rice are always on the table. But these foundational elements, far from being monotonous, are served in amazingly different ways. Various kimchis add complexity to soups and stews, lend brininess to cold noodle dishes, are used in savory appetizer pancakes, and round out the endless variety of side dishes that can be part of a meal. Rice dishes, too, change character, from a soothing breakfast (Sesame Seed Porridge) to a dessert (Panfried Sweet Rice Cakes with Edible Flowers) to an invigorating and malty beverag
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pacities, from 1 to 7 quarts, increasing in 2-cup increments. It is up to you to decide what size you need, depending on the number of people you want to serve on average and what types of foods you will be making. Hard-core slow cooker users usually own two or three sizes.
The three basic size categories are small, medium, and large, which is how we specify the proper cooker to use in each of the recipes in the book. Most sizes come in a choice of round or oval, but be sure to check inside the box when purchasing; we have found that the picture on the outside of the box sometimes does not match the shape within.
Rival’s smallest slow cooker is dubbed the “Little Dipper,” since it is perfect for making and serving hot dips and small amounts of fondue. We prefer the 1- or 1 1 /2 -quart size, as it gives a bit more room for hands to do the dipping. This size, however, is too small for cooking soups and stews. When we indicate “small” in a recipe, you can use a 1 1 /2 – to 2 1 /2 -quart capacity slow cooker. Many who cook for one or two people use a 2- or 2 1 /2 -quart model (if you do, you can cut the recipes designed for the medium-size cooker in half).
SLOW COOKER SIZES AT A GLANCE
When we refer to a small, medium, or large cooker in our recipes, these are the recommended capacities for best results:
1 1 /2 -, 2-, and 2 1 /2 -quart capacity
3, 3 1 /2 -, 4-, and 4 1 /2 -quart capacity
5-, 5 1 /2 -, 6-, and 7-quart capacity
Medium is the most popular size of slow cooker and before you even make your first dish in it, you will know why: It is easy to handle, comfortable to lift and manipulate, and fits nicely on the counter or in the dishwasher. When we indicate “medium” in a recipe, we are referring to the 3- to 4 1 /2 -quart models. The 3-quart oval won us over when we tested recipes for this book. This size holds 4 to 6 servings, equivalent to a 3- to 3 1 /2 -pound roast or cut-up chicken. This is also a good size for two people who like leftovers. Meatloaf can be made in either a round or oval shape of this size, but note the shape of the finished dish will reflect that of the insert.
Large cookers are the 5- to 7-quart models, the most popular being the 5- and 6-quart sizes. These are designed for families and for entertaining and are best for large cuts of meat, such as brisket and corned beef, pot roasts, whole poultry, and large quantities of stew. The large is the preferred size for steaming puddings and brown bread, which require a mold. If you are multiplying up a recipe designated for a medium-size cooker, increase the cooking time by 1 1 /2 to 2 hours and increase your ingredients accordingly, depending on whether you are using a 5-, 6-, or 7-quart cooker. For example, a recipe designed to feed four can be tripled or quadrupled in a larger cooker.
How to Use the Smart-Pot Slow Cooker Machine
What if you want to make a dish that cooks for 6 hours and you won’t be home for 8 hours? Until recently, you had no choice but to overcook the food or make something else. Now there is another option. Rival, maker of the Crock-Pot line of slow cookers, created Smart-Pots, which are slow cookers that are easily programmable, even by the legions of us who can’t figure out how to use our smart phones.
There are two styles of Smart-Pot. One type can cook on the HIGH setting for 4 or 6 hours, or on the LOW setting for 8 or 10 hours. When the cooking time is up, the Smart-Pot will automatically shift to the KEEP WARM setting (which is recommended for no more than 4 hours), so your meal is waiting for you when you are ready to eat. With this type of Smart-Pot, if you want to cook for periods of time that differ from the automated setting (for example, less time on LOW or a longer time on HIGH), you’ll have to be there to turn the pot off or on. Please note that even though this is an automatic machine, you cannot preprogram the cooking start time with a Smart-Pot, letting food sit in the crock to begin cooking at a later time, because the food will spoil rapidly. The Smart-Pot is so named because you can program how long to cook the food.
The second type of Smart-Pot is more flexible. You can set it to cook on HIGH or LOW for anywhere from 30 minutes up to 20 hours, in half-hour increments. Here is how to use it: Fill the crock as usual, place it into the housing, and put on the cover. Plug in the Smart-Pot. The cooker’s three lights—HIGH, LOW, and KEEP WARM—will all flash, alerting you that it is time to select a setting. One push of the round button on the left selects LOW, two pushes select HIGH, and three select KEEP WARM. (If you set the Smart-Pot to KEEP WARM, you cannot set a cooking time. It will stay on KEEP WARM until you manually turn it off.) If you have chosen LOW or HIGH, you will now set the cooking time. Press the button with the up-pointing arrow. Each push adds 30 minutes on the di
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CHICKEN LIVER PTÉ
1 pound chicken livers
1 apple (grated)
3 tablespoons calvados or cognac
8–12 tablespoons (1–1½ sticks) unsalted butter
2 shallots (minced)
salt and pepper
Serves 8 to 10
The most important part of this recipe is the shopping. If you begin with a pound of pretty livers from free-range chickens, the rest is easy. Start with the bedraggled bits you often find in supermarkets, however, and you’re likely to have trouble. So beg your butcher for the best, take your livers home and cut off the gnarly parts (they’re bitter), dry the livers well, and sprinkle them with salt and pepper.
Melt a tablespoon of butter in a large pan, and cook the minced shallots over medium heat until they soften. Toss them into a food processor to wait while you melt a bit more butter and briefly sauté the apple. (Any apple will do, but I prefer a firm, tart variety like Granny Smith.) Add the apple to the food processor and melt a couple more tablespoons butter in the same pan. Turn the heat up high and quickly sauté the livers, shaking the pan, until the outsides have just begun to go from brown to gray (they should still glow pink within).
Remove the pan from the heat, pour the calvados or cognac into it, return to the heat, light the pan with a match, and enjoy the whoosh. When the flames have died and the alcohol has burned off, add the contents of the pan to the food processor and blend until very smooth.
Cut ¾ of a stick (6 tablespoons) of cold butter into chunks and slowly add them to the livers, as you continue to blend. If you have some heavy cream, add a teaspoon or so, although it’s not necessary.
Taste for seasoning and put into ramekins, custard cups, or small bowls. Cover tightly with plastic wrap, pressing it onto the surface of the mousse. Allow the pâté to mellow in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving.
This freezes very well.
At Newark airport. Stop to buy a sandwich and the woman behind the counter says, “I’m so sorry about Gourmet; this one’s on me.”
Still slightly hungover from the party the night before, I threw some clothes into a suitcase and dashed to the airport. Kansas City was the last place I wanted to be, but the chef at Starker’s Restaurant had called, begging me not to cancel the first stop on the book tour. “I’ve had farmers raising special chickens for this dinner for months,” he pleaded. “We have more than a hundred people coming to see you. Please don’t let us down.”
My husband, Michael, thought I was crazy. “What do you care if the book sells or not? It belongs to Condé Nast,” he said. “You need to take a few days off.”
“The chef sounded so desperate,” I said. “I just couldn’t tell him no.”
Michael shook his head as he carried my suitcases to the door. His parting words were “Promise me you’ll eat something at the airport.”
But by the time I got there I had lost my appetite. This trip was a mistake. I felt hollow, miserable, and utterly alone. I was staring blindly at the sandwiches when I realized the woman behind the counter was trying to get my attention. “I loved that magazine,” she said, offering a sympathetic smile. “I could hardly wait for it to arrive each month. Please take anything you like.”
She was so kind, and her generosity so unexpected, that my mood instantly lifted. I looked through the refrigerated case, pulled out a steak sandwich, and ate it with as much pleasure as if it had been a Peter Luger porterhouse.
I know the gift was a tribute to the magazine, not to me, but it was a lovely gesture at a terrible time. To this day a steak sandwich can turn me right around. One bite always reminds me of the power of random acts of kindness.
1 pound skirt steak
4 crusty rolls
If you love steak sandwiches, you need to make friends with skirt steak. It’s a fantastically flavorful cut that doesn’t cost much. It does, however, demand a bit of coddling.
The skirt is a bundle of abdominal muscles that have worked very hard, lending them great flavor and a tendency to be tough. Long and thin (a friend calls it “steak by the yard”), skirt steak has many aliases. In Texas it’s called “beef for fajitas,” and in the Jewish restaurants of New York’s Lower East Side it goes by “Romanian tenderloin.” But in my house it’s sandwich steak because the skinny slices can stand up to salsa, chimichurri, pesto—or simply mustard and a bit of butter.
If you buy your meat from an artisanal butcher, ask for the “outside” skirt, which is fattier and juicier than the inside cut. (If you’re buying meat from industrially raised animals, this is a pointless exercise; the Japanese import 90 percent of American outside skirt steak.)
Rub the meat all over with salt—¾ of
the breast bone with one hand until you completely remove the meat, including the wing.
3. Remove the wings: Feel with your thumb to find the joint where the wings meet the breasts. Place the knife over the joints and slice down to remove the wings.
HERB-STUFFED CHICKEN BREASTS WITH WHITE WINE REDUCTION SAUCE
In our class, after each student bones half a chicken, we use the breasts, which have been boned but not skinned, to make this dish. It is unusual to find boneless breasts with skin at the store, so if all you can find are skinless chicken breasts, you can still make this dish by creating a pocket with a paring knife in the middle of the breast for herb mixture (use care and don’t cut all the way through the meat). The sauce can be prepared in the pan the chicken was seared in or made ahead, if you like, in a 2-quart pot.
FOR THE CHICKEN
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh chives
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 boneless chicken breast halves, with skin
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
FOR THE SAUCE
1/4 cup chopped shallots
1 cup dry white wine
1 cup Chicken Stock
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold
To prepare the chicken, combine the parsley, chives, and shallots in a small bowl and season with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Using your finger to make space between the skin and the breast without detaching the skin, stuff the herb mixture evenly under the skin of the chicken breasts. The breasts can be prepared up to this point several hours ahead and kept chilled.
Preheat the oven to 325°F.
Pat the breasts dry and season all over with salt and pepper. Heat a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat until hot. Add the oil and swirl the pan to coat the bottom. Sear the chicken breasts in 2 batches, skin-side down, and cook until the skin is golden brown, 3 to 5 minutes. When the chicken breasts are browned, they will release from the pan easily, so don’t force them. Turn the breasts over and brown the other side, about 3 minutes more. Transfer the chicken, skin-side up, to a rimmed baking sheet and brown the second batch. When the second batch is finished, remove the skillet from the heat (don’t clean it) and transfer the chicken to the baking sheet.
Place the chicken in the oven to gently cook through, 10 to 15 minutes. To check for doneness, look between the tender and the breast—it should be just rosy but fully opaque. Let the chicken rest in a warm place for 5 minutes before slicing.
To make the sauce, pour off any fat from the skillet, then add the shallots and the wine and bring to a boil over medium-high heat, scraping up any browned bits with a spatula. Boil until all but 2 tablespoons of the liquid has evaporated, about 10 minutes. Add the stock and boil until it has reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Add the cream and boil until it has reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Stir together the cornstarch and cold water and whisk the slurry into the simmering sauce until thickened, about 1 minute. Add any juices from the resting chicken to the sauce, then swirl in the butter. Strain the sauce through a fine-mesh sieve into a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Slice the chicken breasts on the diagonal and serve with the sauce.
Methods of cooking can be broken into two main categories: dry cooking and wet cooking. Searing is a dry cooking method. The intense heat of a skillet produces browning as well as layers of new flavors as the food’s carbohydrates and amino acids react to the heat. This is why a seared steak is so much more intensely flavored than a raw one. Yet if that steak (or chicken or vegetable) has any sort of thickness to it, such high and direct heat would dry it out by the time it was cooked through. That’s why it is common to sear the outside, creating deep flavor and aroma, and then transfer the food to the oven to finish cooking at a lower temperature, say 350°F. We practice this technique in our searing class with a chicken breast.
To start, heat a skillet over high heat until it is very hot and pat the chicken breast dry, removing any extra moisture that might prevent even browning. Add a small amount of fat, such as vegetable or olive oil, to the skillet just before adding the chicken. Make sure not to crowd the pan, which would cause the meat to steam instead of brown. Then leave it alone for several minutes. This is an important step. When the chicken is browned, it will release itself from the pan. Before that, it sticks. If you try to force it off the bottom of the pan, the skin and meat can tear, and the brown stays in the pan instead of on the meat. After the chicken is browned and releases itself from the pan, turn it over and transfer the pan to the ove