Tuesday, April 28, 2009

1 Chicken = 3 Meals

Like the rest of the planet, I am trying to stretch our food budget. Funny thing, the more I try to stretch it, the better we seem to eat. Recently I purchased a Rotisserie Chicken, the $10.99 Free Range chicken was not exactly cheap, but I was shocked at how many meals it provided.

Meal 1: Rotisserie Chicken with new potatoes and broccoli
Meal 2: Spring Vegetable Casserole with Chicken
Meal 3: Chicken and Egg Noodle Soup

So generally what I do is play my own version of Iron Chef... I start with the chicken and then ransack the fridge for whatever I can find. Meal 1 was kinda lazy.. and Meal 3 well what else can you do with a few bits of chickens, some bones and vegetables... It was Meal 2 that I will be scribbling down in the margins of my cookbook.

Spring Vegetable Casserole with Chicken*
Warning: I suck at writing recipes, so there are no exact quantities or times... Just use your best judgment.

  • Vegetables: asparagus, carrots, leeks, peas, broccoli
  • Chicken
  • Cheese ( I like Tillamook Colby Jack or any type of Beechers)
  • Milk
  • Butter
  • Flour
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Parsley
  • Rice
  • Breadcrumbs

In a saute pan, add chopped leeks, and carrots. Saute in a little bit of butter or olive oil. Chop up chicken into small bits and add to leeks and carrots. (I also added a tiny bit of the chicken fat)

Add a small handful of rice to this mixture and a little bit of water. I use the rice as an enhancement, not the main ingredient so in the end, there should be as much rice as vegetables. Keep adding water until rice is cooked.

Peas, asparagus and broccoli were actually frozen and bagged organic veggies. I added them to the saute pan with the rice/chicken mixture and then covered and took them off the stove. The steam will defrost them.. add a bit of heat if they don't defrost all the way.

In another sauce pan, melt a couple of tablespoons of butter. Add a little flour (tablespoon size) and make a paste(roux). Add some milk(about a cup) to this paste and bring to a light boil. Add cheese (1/2 cup diced or more if you prefer) and stir until you have a nice sauce.

Place rice mixture in a casserole pan, pour sauce over mixture... letting it soak into the rice. Loosely cover with breadcrumbs and bake for about 30 minutes (350) until it bubbles. Serve with parsley. I seasoned throughout with salt and pepper... Paprika and a little nutmeg also work well.


Anali said...

Nice! You can do a lot with one chicken. I like how you used the rice. I'm not a big rice person, but I have a little bit here and want to use it up. This might be the way to do it.

Enyasi said...

Thanks... I love rice, but only use it as a supplement to dishes instead of the base. My one exception, coconut jasmine rice... which I could eat the entire pan. Still working out the recipe, but it tastes like dessert!

suttonhoo said...

1) every dish looks delicious -- yum!

2) I laughed outloud when I got the recipe and was told to use my best judgment