More Than One Way to Cook a Chicken.

So over the last several years I have been feeling pressed to do better on food choices and were my food comes from. Years ago I started organic gardening, and that has evolved into so many other areas. But today I wanted to have a quick post on what I did with a chicken I obtained locally from a nearby farmer. This chicken did cost more than say your grocery store chicken. But considering it was raised on pasture and not in a dark warehouse in a cubicle, and the fact that it was fed an organic diet I think constitutes its higher price. So here we go.

I wanted to cook this chicken rotisserie style but had no rottisserie. So I opted just for my oven. After de-thawing it and rinsing under a cold faucet I put it in a glass casserole dish.
I learned  a few months ago that wet skin on a chicken before baking will make its skin when finished rubbery and soft. I did not want that so I patted it down well with a dry paper towel. This way the seasonings will stick better and you will get that crispy flesh I was after.

Then I took some herbs from the garden– Thyme, Oregano and Sage. And stuffed it right between the chickens breast and skin. It looks a little funny. But let me tell you it’s good eats. That and a little “rottiserie style seasoning on top and it’s oven-ready.

I cooked the chicken for a little over an hour at 400f. While it was cooking I made some Basmati Brown rice. You could use whatever rice you like. We just love Basmati. After it came out we had it all on a plate and we even drizzled some of the chicken fat over the rice.

Very, very, good. So after we were finished we had about half a chicken left. And half a pan of rice. So what’s one to do? Chicken Soup of course! So today As I write this I smell the wonderful aroma. Here is the break down.

Right after you have devoured all you could of the chicken the first time around. Take what’s left and de-bone it. If you wait to do this when its cold it will take longer. But do what is easiest for you. But whatever you do– do not throw the bones out! You will need those a little later.
After you have it all ready [I had a bowl of the meat and another bowl for the bones] scoop that chicken fat out of the casserole dish and put it with your bones. Now you can either put the whole concoction of bowls in the fridge or you can cook soup with it right away. I waited and made soup two days later.

And now for making the soup.

First thing I did was drag out the crockpot. I placed the setting to low. Then I put the bowl I had of chicken and made narrow strips of it. I brought out two long celery stalks and diced them up. I then put the chicken and the celery in the crockpot  along with the leftover rice with about four cups of water.

I covered the crockpot then I pulled out a pot with a metal strainer. I put the chicken bones along with the fat in the pot and filled it to just covering the bones.

I then heated the pot on my stove until only 1/3 the liquid was left. I added around three teaspoons of kosher salt and mixed it in well. And then I had my chicken broth/stock for my soup. I added the broth to the crockpot and there I finally had chicken soup! I am going to let it cook now for a few hours in the crockpot on low. And it will be sooo good! The best part of this recipe is that I used just leftover’s from a previous meal. And we literally did not waste a single thing! So we were able to get quite a lot out of one chicken.

Thanks for listening!


One thought on “More Than One Way to Cook a Chicken.

  1. Ashley,
    Your posting here of how far you can stretch one chicken looks delicious, but so far I’ve found my chickens are too lean for roasting. Though they are known as dual purpose birds, they are better enjoyed as egg layers than as meat birds. I have prepared my “harvested” birds in several ways, but find soup is the best use. I do love a roasted chicken and yours looks yum.
    You asked about breeds of my hens: the lightest hen is Rosie, as her comb and wattle were the reddest of her breed while she was maturing. She is a Buff Orpington. Her eggs are a creamy beige. The rusty colored hen is Amelia, as she was the first to “fly” out of the chicken house when we let them out for the first time. She is my largest hen, lays dark brown eggs and is a Rhode Island Red. Her comb is crooked and endearing. The dark grey and white bird is Phoebie. When she was a chick her rear end was white and puffy as a powder puff. I thought of her as having a puff butt, PB, or more genteely called Phoebie. She is very talkative, has a distinctive sound, always flew over the gate to explore and is the reason I had to clip my chickens wings. When I’d discover her outside her enclosure, I’d go out to get her safely back behind her fence. As soon as she would see me approach, she would come directly to me and follow me to the chicken yard gate, talking all the while, walk right back into her chicken yard and in a few hours we’d do it all over again! She also lays light cream colored eggs and is a Barred Rock. The hen whose head resembles a bird of prey is LadyHawk. Her eggs are a soft green and though she is the smallest bird, lays the largest eggs. She is an Araucana/ Americana, also called the Easter Egg chicken. She also liked to fly over the gate but refused to cooperate about going back in. The last hen is called Minerva. She is black with a lovely green sheen in the sunlight. Therefore she is named for the head witch of Harrie Potter fame who always dressed in black and green. She is a Black Australorp. Her eggs are also light cream, but right now she is being broody, sitting on anyone else’s eggs while not laying any of her own. I’m told she will eventually give up and get back to production. Happily she lets me reach under her and remove her roommate’s eggs without any fuss.
    I like very much your tomato cages but didn’t find any fencing here like yours. We ended up using old fencing and then finding more of it new to make the rest. I’ll be posting on it soon. I think yours look better, but I’m pleased we were able to use up what we had on hand.
    Keep posting. I enjoy seeing what you’re up to. And more photos of your garden, please!

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