The Frog & Penguinn household consists of only two – Grenville and Beatrice (that’s me) and that makes meals interesting because we think that leftovers are always a good thing. BUT, as much as we like leftover chicken, eating it the same way for a few nights can get very b-o-r-i-n-g very quickly. Here’s how a single small chicken (5 pound)was the basis for 3 different meals this week – and there’s still leftovers from 2 of them – chicken soup and chicken pot pie.
Sunday. The chicken was roasted after being seasoned with pepper and salt and brushed with olive oil. Side dishes were red potatoes cut up and roasted in a baking dish with olive oil and fresh rosemary; lima beans and corn (from last year’s harvest) cooked with some butter, pepper and salt. (Save the leftover chicken and the carcass with some chicken left on it. Both are needed for dinners that follow.)
Tuesday. The saved chicken carcass became the basis for a pot of chicken soup – perfect dinner on a cold and rainy evenings dinner. It was perfect served with the fresh bread that Grenville baked that afternoon. I placed the chicken carcass in a pot and covered with water, added some sliced onion, carrots, celery, pepper, salt, parsley. Let the pot come to a boil to that the remaining meat comes off the bone easily. Remove the carcass, cool then remove the meat. Add chicken broth or bullion to the soup base and season to taste as needed (my choices – pepper and salt, oregano and thyme). Add some frozen or canned veggies (drain first) and simmer on low heat. Also add in the chicken (I used some of the leftover cut-up chicken from Sunday’s dinner). Serve “as is” or add egg noodles or rice – we prefer egg noodles.
Wednesday. The leftover chicken from Sunday’s dinner was used in a chicken pot pie (my first). Grenville’s gardening efforts have stocked our small chest freezer with beans, corn, broccoli and other assorted veggies. That’s what was used in this recipe with the addition of fresh onions, mushrooms, carrots, and celery. Here’s the recipe I used and the results below.
Chicken Pot Pie
The great thing about this recipe is that you can use whatever vegetables you have available – fresh, frozen or canned veggies. On second thought, go out and get some fresh or frozen and avoid using anything canned.
Pastry for 9-inch, two-crust pie. Preheat oven to 425°.
- 2 tbsp butter
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- ½ tsp thyme
- ½ tsp parsley
- ½ C chicken broth
- ½ C light cream OR half & half
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 3 carrots, cut and diced
- 2 stalks celery, cut and diced
- 1 C vegetables – your choice (mine was lima beans and corn leftover from Sunday’s dinner)
- ½ C fresh mushrooms
- 2 C cubed cooked chicken
Prepare pie crusts (if you have the time) or use refrigerated brand (my choice and there’s always a couple in our freezer – yeah.)
- Heat half the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion, carrots, celery, and mushrooms and cook until softened. I added the carrots so they got a head start softening, then added the onions, mushrooms and celery and then the rest of the veggies.
- Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. Blend in flour, salt and pepper, thyme.
- Cook over low heat, stirring constantly until mixture is smooth and bubbly.
- Remove from heat; stir in chicken broth and cream. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly (again). Boil and stir 1 minute.
- Add chicken and vegetables. Pour into pastry lined pan. Cover with 2nd crust. Seal and flute.
Bake 35 to 40 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with a side salad. This pot pie will serve 6, depending on how hungry you are – for us it’s lunch or dinner for a couple more meals.