Monday, April 16, 2012

The Whole Nine Yards with Whole Chicken

Let's look at how to stretch those pennies on your purchase of a whole free-range chicken. We'll use Mary's Chickens from Pittman Family Farms one of my favorite farms that has ratings Step 3 and Step 5 for their farming practices according to the Global Animal Partnership. Their free-range chicken costs $2.29/lb locally, so about $9 for a 4lb chicken.**

Use 1: Slow roast your whole chicken, see recipe here. Serve with salad, vegetables, potatoes, brown rice or other grains and your 4lb chicken should satisfy four to five people. Note that a healthy portion of meat per serving is about 4oz, the size of the palm of your hand and the size of a deck of cards thick.
Use 2: Take your carcass and pick off every little piece of meat left on those bones. Save for enchilada or taco filling, chicken soup, or tossing on a salad.
Use 3: Save the drippings from the bottom of the roasting pan. These are called the poultry drippings, or poultry fat and are wonderful to use for cooking in place of processed, vegetable oils. You can also add them to your soups as they make a wonderfully gelatinous broth.
Use 4: In a large dutch oven or crock pot, place your scavenged carcass, the neck and the giblets if you have them, any vegetable scraps, a dash of vinegar and brew your own bone broth for at least 24 hours. Depending on the size of your pot you should be able to make at least 2 quarts of the most nourishing and healing broth. Keep refrigerated for a week or freeze the broth for up to 6 months.

 Your broth can be used for various things including:
-Cooking grains like brown rice, quinoa or millet
-Making soups
-Home-made sauces like gravy
-As a baste or marinade for meats
-A nourishing warm beverage

 A carton of high quality chicken broth cost about $3 and will still not have near the health properties of your home-made, long simmered bone broth. That's $6 right there which means you spent about $3 for the meat portion that could last for two meals. Sounds like we outstretched those pennies to me!

**Having researched this farm I have found that the chickens are truly free-ranged and being raised in a healthy, clean environment. They also have a free-range chicken that is being fed 'certified organic' food. It is an excellent quality chicken but will be more expensive as the price for certified organic feed is higher. This chicken costs $3.79/lb locally and is a great choice as well. Read more on this topic here.**

1 comment:

  1. Wow you are such a great photographer!!! lovin the blog...keep em comin