Rocky and Rosie Chickens – The Story of Petaluma Poultry

At Oliver’s Market, we believe in the healthiest you and the fact that improving your own health and feeling your best is not just a diet, but a lifestyle. In many of our departments you will find a variety of products that give you great options to incorporate healthier foods into your daily life.

Our Meat Department has a wide variety of healthy options including Humboldt Grass Fed Beef, Rosie Organic Chicken, fresh local and sustainable seafood, and much more.

This week we’re highlighting Petaluma Poultry and their ROCKY® and ROSIE® brand chickens. Get to know the story behind Petaluma Poultry, sample some delicious appetizers from them at all four Oliver’s Market locations this week, and try one of these recipes highlighting these tasty birds.

Petaluma Poultry

Allen Shainsky was born into a family of egg farmers and developed his passion and respect for poultry at an early age. He founded Petaluma Poultry in 1969 and dedicated his life to growing chickens with the utmost care while being mindful of the land.

In the 1980’s San Francisco Bay Area chefs challenged him to produce a chicken that had the “old fashioned” chicken flavor reminiscent of their culinary training in Europe. Shainsky spent months in France researching poultry husbandry and returned to implement back to basics growing techniques. This included an all-vegetarian diet with no animal by-products, no antibiotics, no artificial hormones or steroids and a change in the animal’s environment that allowed them more room to roam naturally.

Because of this, the ROCKY® brand became one of the first free range chickens that satisfied chefs as well as growing consumer base that wanted healthy, tasty birds while leaving a small environmental footprint.

Petaluma Poultry started organic protocols 10 years before the USDA allowed meat and poultry to be labeled organic. They fought to establish a defined organic certification program to help clear up the confusion in the marketplace. Thus, in 1999 the ROSIE® brand became the first third party certified organic chicken on the market to earn the USDA Organic seal.

Here are two recipes featuring chicken that are sure to be a hit at your dinner table!

Dijon Tarragon Chicken Breasts

Serves 4


14 ounces low sodium chicken broth
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon or
Salt and freshly ground black pepper


Bring chicken broth to a boil. Add chicken to the broth, cover and reduce heat to simmer. Poach chicken 12 minutes. Remove chicken to a plate and pour broth into a large measuring cup or batter bowl. Return the pan to heat and add butter. When butter melts, add flour and cook, whisking with butter, 2 minutes. Slowly pour cooking liquid back into the pan, until appropriately thickened, combining with a whisk. Stir in Dijon mustard and tarragon and season sauce with salt and pepper. Return chicken to the pan and coat with sauce. Simmer 2 or 3 minutes to heat chicken back through and to combine flavors.

Roast Chicken with Lemon and Herbs

Serves 4


4 oz. butter at room temperature

1 (4-lb.) free-range chicken

1 lemon

Several sprigs of thyme or tarragon, or a mixture of the two

1 clove garlic, peeled and crushed

Salt and pepper


Preheat the oven to 450°. Smear the butter with your hands all over the bird. Put the chicken in a roasting pan that will accommodate it with room to spare. Season liberally with salt and pepper and squeeze over with the juice of the lemon.

Put the herbs and garlic inside the cavity, together with the squeezed-out lemon halves—this will add a fragrant lemony flavor to the finished dish.

Roast the chicken in the oven for 10–15 minutes. Baste, then turn the oven temperature down to 375° and roast for a further 30–45 minutes with further occasional basting. The bird should be golden brown all over with a crisp skin and have buttery, lemony juices of a nut-brown color in the bottom of the pan.

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