Jan 6, 2012

The Potential of Split Chicken Breasts

The first week of 2012 is almost over and its been a busy one. I worked Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday so those days were mainly work and come home to recover and then make dinner. But, I did manage to cook up a whole pile of chicken I found on sale at a local grocery store for $0.89/lb.
I started with three large packages of split chicken breasts. Using my largest knife - which was unfortunately quite dull - I cut all the chicken breasts from the bones and peeled off the skin. Then, I sliced out the tenderloins. If you're interested in a tutorial check this out but my hands were covered in raw chicken and I had two small arms wrapped around my legs and two wild boys driving laps around our kitchen island (and me) on their tricycles, so there were no pictures of the cutting process!

I kept four chicken breasts whole for baking/frying.

Here are the tenderloins and a few extra pieces of meat I cut off the bones.

I placed the skin, bones (with extra meat still on the bones - especially the rib area), and scraps into my 7 Qt slow cooker for making into stock. I filled the slow cooker with water and two dashes of apple cider vinegar (I opted to add no veggies or seasoning) and cooked it on low all day (probably ended up being about 9 hours) before draining the stock into a large bowl and allowing the bones/meat to cool enough to handle.

The rest of the chicken breasts not put in the freezer whole, were boiled for shredding. I ended up with four 1 lb bags of meat for my freezer and enough extra which I made into chicken alfredo! I even used the leftover chicken water for boiling the fettucine pasta for the alfredo.

Here is the beautiful stock! I got enough to put in my dinner (oriental chicken over brown rice) along with four 2 c. bags which I put in my freezer! I'm super excited about making my own chicken stock!

This is the bones and meat after I drained the stock off. I picked every last bit of meat off those bones!

Here is the meat I picked off the bones! I used one bowl (about 8 oz.) for my dinner (the oriental chicken) and the other I put into two 4 oz. packages for the freezer for lunches.

This sounds like a lot of work but the most of the work is in cutting the raw meat from the bones - which would be so much easier with a sharp knife - and shredding the cooked meat and picking the cooked meat from the bones. I did it over two days because I saved the scraps/bones for broth in my slow cooker in my fridge until the next day and set it cooking with water before I left for work in the morning. So spread out over two days, it wasn't that bad and I am so proud to have so much cheap meat in my freezer for future meals! And, that stock is just so awesome and good for you!

All in all, I got 9 meals just from the chicken (including the chicken reserved for lunches). That is awesome since I only spent about $13.50 total! Don't forget to utilize some of your internet time to check out weekly sale ads from your favorite local grocery stores to plan to take advantage of great sales!

1 comment:

  1. very efficient! The chicken broth looks nice and rich.


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