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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

1 Chicken = 3 Dinners

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.

roast chkn0410Sunday. 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 ofchicken-veggie soup0112 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 inchicken pot pie (3) 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.ingredients

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.)

  1. Heat half the butter in a large saucepan. Add the onion, veggiescarrots, 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.
  2. Melt butter in saucepan over medium heat. Blend in flour, salt and pepper, thyme. 
  3. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly until mixture is smoothsauce and bubbly.
  4. Remove from heat; stir in chicken broth and cream. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly (again). Boil and stir 1 minute.
  5. 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.

first cuts (2)

12 comments:

Anvilcloud said...

I need to spend some time at the PenguINN.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

AC, anytime - just let us know!

Montanagirl said...

Sounds and looks wonderful!

George said...

Each of these meals sounds delicious. We usually plan on leftovers when we fix a meal. It's nice to have something that we can warm up or fix quickly.

Mama-Bug said...

I love chicken anyway it can be fixed. Pot pie and chicken & rice are two of my favorites. I even make tacos with leftover chicken. They looked really yummy Beatrice.

Out on the prairie said...

You know me, the pie sounds good.I got some small bowls to make individual one.My mom made the bone soup always with turkey carcass.

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Mona, it was delicious but will be more so the second (and third) time around.
Hi George, we do enjoy cooking but if we can escape for an evening (or two) with leftovers, we like that even better - with only 2 in the household, leftovers are a certainty.
Mama-Bug, this was my first (honest) time making a chicken pot pie and trying different versions will be on the menu plans cause we stocked up on a couple of whole chickens during a recent grocery store sale.
Steve, individual ones would be a good idea and the next time I plan to make my own crust, just have to find a couple of small, oven-proof bowls, which would be something to look for in a thrift store or yard sale. Thanks for the tip!

Pat transplanted to MN said...

oh drats I was in the midst of my comment and off it all went, so here again.. I know just what you mean about left overs. With only two of us, we have them often.That works great for me, less time spent cooking, more time at the computer & ...I often freeze leftovers for later because I get bored eating the same thing any number of days in a row.... Just last night we finished meal #2 and ate all the wonderful Great Northern Bean Soup that I made last week..occasionally I make smaller amounts, but some things like a chicken are best cooked entirely and shared over several meals..

The Gingerbread House said...

That Chicken looks devine and the Chicken pie looks scrumptous. Sounds like your freezer is giving you some pleasure :o)...Nothing like one that is well stocked...Ginny

thecottagebythecranelakeolof1 said...

That pot pie looks delicious! I´ve been thinking of what to do with the chicken leftovers I will have after making the chicken I have in my freezer, now I know :-)

Have a great day now!
Christer.

Country Mouse Studio said...

looks yummy especially the Chicken pie

Beatrice P. Boyd said...

Pat, glad to hear we are not the only 2 who have the leftovers problem. SOmetimes, there are none, but when they are - yeah cause no cooking for a couple of days!
Ginny, yes and we are certainly making good use of the frozen veggies even if they are sometimes a big soft - soups are good for those.
Christer, hope you dinner turns out delicious. We like chicken because you can make several meals out of one whole chicken and not have to eat the same thing twice.
Carole, the chicken pie will be even better on Friday night when it's served as leftovers.

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