Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Chicken Valentine

Miss MoneyPenny figures that if she is going to pay $2.79 a pound for a fresh organic chicken that, by golly, there had better be a long term relationship involved. I know - enough with the chicken posts!! This will be the last. I promise, sort of.

I was dozing in my chair today lusting after one of those neck collars that you see people wear who have been in a wreck (Miss MoneyPenny's neck hurts) when I started to think about chickens and the olden times before you bought them all cut up. It occurred to me that one of the reasons that you can get sick from eating chicken is the same reason as for ground beef. If you have someone manhandling all those pieces there is a better chance that bacteria can get in. When you buy a pack of chicken thighs, just how many chickens are we talking about here, and where did each one come from?

So I thought I would tell you what I did with that chicken, bless its heart (it is Valentines Day.) The first go round was roasted with carrots and bell peppers cut in fourths nestled around it. The peppers were from last week's QFC deal. We ate the legs and thighs that night. The next step was to take the chicken off the bone. I chopped it and put it in labeled freezer bags, except for a half breast which is for my salads this week. The rest of the bones and skin, plus a couple of leftover carrots went into the crock pot for stock. I added a couple of ribs of celery, bay leaf and the end of an onion with lots of pepper.  After eight hours, I strained it and fished out the skin, carrots and any meat pieces which I mashed up and fed to the doggies.  They were thrilled!!

After the stock chilled, I scraped the fatty layer off and got almost two quarts of jellied stock, which went into the freezer.  Now I've got enough broth and chicken for chicken and dumplings, plus for stir fry. 

Whew!!  Now I feel like the chicken and I had a successful relationship.

Speaking of relationships.  The guy from Seattle came through for Valentine's Day with a new charm for my bracelet.  Check it out.

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