11 November 2009

What can you get for $7.50?


Monday I decided to make White Chicken Enchiladas for dinner. I had found the recipe on The Pioneer Woman's website and it started my stomach grumbling. In a good way, a very good way! I started a grocery list of the things I needed to pick up; sour cream, shredded cheese, green chilies, a whole cut-up chicken.

Wha?

I'm a meat eater that likes her meat unrecognizable from the animal. No bones, skin, eyes, feathers or organs. I spent a year in China and after seeing every animal come to the table whole, with all of their parts intact I don't need to see them that way any more. So a whole cut-up chicken? Doesn't sound like that big of a deal, but it's not something that I would normally buy, because there are just too many parts that I wouldn't want to deal with. But I digress.

So we head out to the store and pick up the ingredients and then some and I set out to make dinner. I throw the chicken in a stock pot, cover with water and let it simmer for thirty minutes. So easy! Tender, juicy, perfectly done chicken. Maybe this whole chicken thing is not such a bad thing after all.

So I set out to make the fillings and start by shredding all of the meat off the bones. Messy, time consuming but really worth it. I added some spinach to the filling to round out the veggie content (the Mr. is a spinach fanatic). I had enough chicken to make one batch of enchilada filling (two dinners for us) and still had some left over. Ok, this chicken is going a long way.

I saved the cooking water and the chicken bones and after we put LN to bed I added an onion I'd quarted (with the skin on) and two large carrots. I set this up on the stove and let it simmer for thirty to forty minutes. Or however long an episodes of Bones is. Turned it off and let it cool on the stove.

Now I was tired by the time it had cooled, so I just stuck the whole pot in the fridge to deal with in the morning. Took it out, strained it and put it in two cup increments into freezer bags. Stuck them in the freezer and away we went. Seriously, I am pretty sure that this chicken crossed the road, came back for lunch, crossed again and then came home. That chicken really went the extra mile!

So here's what a $7.50 chicken got me. I like the fact that it was already cut up. You can get a whole chicken for cheaper, but then you have to hack it apart yourself. Or you can buy a rotisserie chicken, but then you don't get the broth the chicken was poached in. But again, I digress. Without further ado, here is my bounty:
  • Five cups shredded chicken for enchiladas (Enough for two dinners)
  • Additional three cups of shredded chicken (At least one more dinner)
  • Eight cups of chicken homemade chicken stock (Countless dinners and uses)
I was pretty impressed. I think I'll be buying those whole chicken packages more often. I really just can't believe what a good deal they can be! The poaching and making the stock was SO easy. Just dump stuff in the pot and forget it. The shredding part is messy and sucky, but in the end you have great, healthy chicken to throw into pasta, make into chicken and dumplings, enchiladas or even chicken salad. The possibilities are endless.



1 comment:

  1. Last night I ended up making a white pizza and put some of the left over chicken on it. Yum, yum!

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