1 chicken, 4 purposes
If you're anything like us, managing work, kids, housekeeping, sports practice and the list goes on and on......
Sometimes eating healthy and not breaking the bank seems hard to pull off at the end of a long day. Especially when kids are hungry and all we are able to do is "run for the border" and eat fast food. This option usually leaves us feeling guilty! We want and know we need to eat better but have a hard time planning, buying, prepping and cooking something that actually tastes good and our kids will eat!
We want to help because we've been there also. Here are a few ways to utilize one of our nutritious whole chickens and get 4 PURPOSES out of it.
The first meal that we get out of a nutritious whole chicken is:
1. BAKED CHICKEN-seasoned with salt, pepper, garlic, and rubbed down with REAL butter and baked at 400 degrees for 1 and 1/2 hours. Make sure to add water under your chicken to keep meat from drying out.
(I use a roasting pan with a rack and add my liquid to the bottom of my pan. You may need to add more water as needed as the chicken cooks. Also, if any liquid is left after the chicken cooks, this can be used for a tasty chicken gravy, or it can be saved, frozen, and added to stock)
MAKE SURE TO PUT YOUR CHICKEN BONES AND SKIN in a baggie to be used for homemade stock! I stick mine in a freezer friendly ziplock baggie and store them in the freezer until I'm ready to make the stock. I will address this in just a sec in this blog.
2. CHICKEN SALAD- There is usually always chicken left over from my baked chicken so instead of sticking it in my fridge and forgetting about it, I de-bone and cube what is left and make a delicious chicken salad that makes amazing sandwiches or wraps for lunch! The recipe is super simple and can be prepared using this recipe:
1 1⁄2 cups chopped cooked chicken or 1 1⁄2 cups cooked turkey.
1⁄2 cup sliced celery.
1⁄2 cup thinly sliced green onion.
1 tablespoon lemon juice.
1⁄8 teaspoon pepper.
1⁄3 cup mayonnaise.
2 tablespoons sweet pickle relish or 2 tablespoons chopped green peppers.
2 teaspoons prepared mustard.
In medium mixing bowl combine first three ingredients.
Stir in the lemon juice and pepper.
Combine the mayo, pickle relish and prepared mustard.
Add this sauce to chicken and gently stir in the eggs.
Cover and chill until ready to serve.
3. CHICKEN STOCK- This is probably my most favorite way to re-purpose my nutritious whole chicken leftovers! Seriously, y'all...if myself or one of tribe gets the sniffles, this Momma breaks out the chicken stock! I make my chicken stock by breaking out my freezer bag of leftover chicken bones and skin from my baked chicken meal. I use a large stock pot and and cover my chicken leftovers with water. I should also add that I save vegetable STOCK SCRAPS in my kitchen everyday also! This means that any vegetable scraps from other meals I make, such as onion peel and leftover onion pieces, bell pepper stems and seeds, celery tops and leaves, carrot ends and pieces, ALL go into a plastic freezer bag to be used in my stock. If you haven't saved veggie scraps, that OK too! But I highly suggest these items for a hearty and rich chicken stock: onions (peel and all), celery, bell pepper, and carrots. (Optional: A capful of apple cider vinegar added to your stock will help draw out nutrients from the chicken bones.) I cook my stock on my stove top on the medium setting for 8 hours or until the chicken bones are brittle and crumble and then let my stock simmer on low for several hours. Often times, I let my stock simmer on low all night long before I get it freezer ready the next day. When my stock has cooled completely, I strain the broth off of the chicken and veggies and use a ladle to scoop into ice cube trays. I stick these in the freezer and store them in quart sized freezer ziplocks. The stock cubes can be used as needed straight from your freezer, when you need them!
4. DOG TREATS- We love ALL of our animals here at Turkey Hollow Farm, but our dogs are near and dear to our hearts. So shouldn't they be able to reap the benefits of the nutritious whole chickens that they help to protect here on our farm? We think so! So after my stock has been strained, our beloved dogs get to enjoy the flavorful bones, skin, and vegetables that are left over after straining. Our dogs think they are getting a SUPER DUPER treat when Momma makes stock!!
Thank y'all for reading and being faithful customers of Turkey Hollow Farm! My hope is that you will be able to get as many uses out of your nutritious whole chicken as we do! We love yall and wish you happy cooking.