How do you parcel out a whole chicken for making several meals? Or is your family large enough to require one or more whole birds at a meal? Or do you make up one recipe for the whole thing and enjoy leftovers?
Since there are only three of us at home now, I don’t mind divvying up parts and pieces into several different meals. For the past couple days, we enjoyed a 4.25 lb broiler from Pigeon Creek Farms in five different entrees. Now, i must admit that they were small meals, so these may not be enough individually if you are outside working hard.
After cutting up the thawed chicken,
Fried chicken – used the 2 thighs, 2 drumsticks, 2 wings dredged in flour and until crispy and golden. Saved the cooking oil and flour….
Chicken gravy – used the saved cooking oil and flour stirred in, added milk and heated through to make thick country gravy. Use on the chicken, smashed potatoes, or over torn pieces of bread.
Chicken broth – placed the back and bones from the breast meat into 3 cups of water, brought to a boil and simmered for a couple hours. Tear bits of meat off the bone to add to broth or….
Salad – use those bits of chicken meat and top off a chef salad
Chicken Kiev – had never made it before and likely won’t again. It’s tasty, but not worth the extra work. Not even as tasty as fried chicken or spatchcocked chicken, both of which are much easier to prepare.
On Sunday afternoon, i threw a thawed 4 ish lb sirloin roast into a small electric roaster. I must admit, i use this little roast unrelentingly, yet only paid $5 for the thing! It was at a church fundraising bazaar and that is the price marked on it. I did not like the noisy little fan on the air roaster, so it was simply removed and the holecovered with tape. Done and done.
Day 1: Sliced roast with smashed sweet potato and fresh salad. Not much more to say, very delicious, simple, and filling. Pictured here is one small smashed sweet potato and about 3.5 ounces of beef roast and a ubiquitous power salad.
Day 2 – Beef & Vegetable Soup – was planning something else, but my husband came up croupy and sick with a cold, so switched gears to make a cold buster soup. Mix the broth created when the roast was cooking with the cooking water from the sweet potato preparation for a nutritionally powerful base for adding sliced carrots, diced scrubbed potatoes with skins, finely chopped onion, minced garlic, sliced celery, then salt and pepper to taste. The broth is strong, but i added 2-3 oz of roast chopped into small pieces to this dish. All in all this yielded about 5 cups of deliciousness. Bring to slight boil, then simmer 20 minutes, but longer doesn’t hurt, just mind keeping on the lid so the moisture doesn’t get away. Feel free to add water for a thinner soup.
Day 3: Crumbled roast in Scrambled eggs (Egg Frittata)
This is my go to when i’m short on time for anything – don’t even need meat. Saute a finely chopped small onion in the saved fat drippings from cooking the roast. After a couple minutes, cut or chop fresh spinach into the skillet, stir those around until softened, then add as much crumbled roast as you want, then add eggs. This is one of the recipes where you can add as much or as little as you need to make the meal. Plus, dress it up even more with sliced fresh mushrooms, sliced black olives, shredded cheese. Or exchange the spinach with any leftover greens you have in the frig.
Day 4: Cubed roast beef with smashed potatoes and white sauce, steamed broccoli
Since i used all the broth for the sick day soup, white gravy made with milk will be a great substitute. Onions are for healing, so finely chopped and sauteed in the beef fat before adding flour and milk creates more robust and healthful gravy.
Day 5 – Roast Beef Salad – an old fashioned favourite
To squeeze out another power soup, use the cooking water from potatoes and steamed broccoli – chop onions, carrots, and the stems of the broccoli – add to the water and bring to a boil. Season with salt, pepper, and even parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme to boost flavour if you like. Although i seldom use rosemary or thyme simply because i don’t like them!
So, there’s a small example of roast flexibility, whatever it’s worth!
My son was required in one of his classes at uni to take subscription of the Wall Street Journal. We had taken it for years, but it had gotten so expensive we’d dropped. However, as a student, he could receive it for $50 a year!
Once in a while a fabulous recipe which meets my criteria is published and i nab it and usually tweak it just a bit. Here’s one i found just last week.
The original version is pictured far below, but here’s what i did:
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 cloves garlic
Sauté these in a medium hot skillet with 1 tablespoons butter, then add mushrooms and lettuce until softened – all in all about 6 minutes. Don’t let it burn!
1/2 cup diced mushrooms
1 cup snipped fresh spinach (or 1/4 cup chopped cauliflower leaves, celery, etc)
Add these items to the above skillet until softened
1 lb grass finished ground beef
1/2 cup finely ground bread crumbs (use leftovers from a failed baking experiment)
1 egg yolk from farm fresh eggs (save the white for scrambled eggs in the morning)
1/4 cup ketchup
1 1/2 tablespoons brandy (i discovered that brandy is a substitute for bourbon)
Mix together, by hand, all these ingredients to make the loaf. Pat into a 2 1/2 diameter loaf and place on a lipped baking sheet.
FOR THE GLAZE:
While the meatloaf is cooking, whisk together in a small bowl:
As soon in the spring that i can source good veggies, i start making my Israeli Salad. I eat a whole batch nearly everyday that i can through the growing season until the veggies get yucky again.
My recipe is simple:
1 green pepper chopped
1 tomato chopped
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 cucumber chopped
2 tablespoons dried cilantro or parsley (double that if using fresh)
1 teaspoon Real salt (double this if you are sweating a lot and need salt)
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon olive oil
Stir it all up. As with most veggies and fruits – room temperature is best for lovely flavours.