Sunday, May 27, 2012

Why picking the meat off a chicken carcass is worthwhile


There are frugal things we do, even when we would rather not.  For me, that's picking apart a chicken carcass, after simmering for broth.  It's not a pleasant thing, having my hands get all goopy.  But I do it anyway.

Yesterday afternoon, I had no idea what to make for dinner, I mean no idea. My daughters and I brainstormed for a bit. It seemed as if I didn't have much in stock to make dinner.  I could tell the wheels in their minds were turning, thinking "maybe Mom will get a pizza". My wheels were also turning. I was  thinking, "gotta stay within the budget, we're close to the end of the month." Then I remembered that I had two chicken carcasses in the freezer.  These were the remains from whole chickens, roasted and almost completely eaten, a couple of months ago. You see, I don't cook the carcasses up right away, but wrap them in plastic and freeze until I have 2 to do.  That way, I'm only having to get all goopy once for 2 chickens.

When we came home I dropped the 2 carcasses into a pot of water. They simmered for an hour. When they were cool I was able to do the messy work. The reason that I'm telling you all this, is that after that work, I had a pile of good chicken meat with which to make dinner.  I was curious just how much meat I had salvaged from the chickens.  It was 2 full cups!  Now, that was 2 chickens, so average that out to 1 cup per chicken, of good, delicious meat.  In addition, the simmering made almost 3 quarts of broth.

Had I not ever bothered with those carcasses, we would've missed out on a great meal. I used this tasty chicken to make a large pot of chicken and dumplings for our supper last night. And everyone left the table full and satisfied.

Some of the frugal things we do are not all that pleasant, but the value of the end result surpasses whatever measure of unpleasantness we endure.

3 comments:

  1. I am very blessed to be married to a man who loves to deal with poultry carcasses . . . and the leftovers make a quick and easy dinner option--gotta love that!

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    1. Kris, you are blessed indeed. My husband does the biggie for me. He cleans out the turkey on Thanksgiving, something I haven't the stomach to do. And you're right, the leftovers make dinner preparation so simple. If my day is so full that all I can come up with is leftover chicken, rice and frozen veggies, we're still doing well! Hope you're having a lovely holiday!

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    2. I'm new to your blog and haven't looked back at previous posts, but do you ever use those carcasses to make hearty chicken stock? Simmer for 24 hours in the crockpot; bones, skin, fat, even the scrapings from the bottom of the pan, add onion, garlic, pepper, salt and whatever else you want, and don't forget 1 T of apple cider vinegar to draw out more of the nutrients. Delicious!

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