I remembered to take out the chicken from the freezer. Phew! Sometimes, just remembering that step is the hardest part of prepping meals.
Monday, after I baked the bacon for the BLT's (which were fantastic, thank you), I put the whole four pound chicken is a 13x9 baking dish with some olive oil and salt and stuck it in the oven. The best part is that I was completely able to forget about it until my internal clock had gone off to let me know that perhaps, maybe, I should check it. I pulled it out of the oven and let it cool. Then I plopped it in a bowl and put it in the refrigerator until this afternoon.
If I was REALLY forward planning I would have pulled it apart when I cooked it. However, my procrastination gene was kicking in and so I left the dismantling until today.
Once I had pulled the meat off and shredded it, this is what I ended up with. Oh, the possibilities.
The first thing I threw together was my chicken stock. I'm super lazy when it comes to doing this. I employ one of my Crock Pots and stick the leftover carcass and some water in and let it run for literally 24 hours. I have, on occasion, added some kind of condensed vegetable stock to the water. I do like doing that because it adds a lot of depth to the stock without all the complaints I usually get when I add in onions. I don't know about your family, but if mine even sees an onion near their dinner I get a symphony of complaints. Personally, I say the more onions, the better!
Once the stock was under way, I eyed up my pile of shredded chicken. Another family favorite is Chicken Shepard's Pie. I have no idea if there is an actual recipe for this casserole, because I originally made it out of leftovers from a Thanksgiving dinner (only then it was "Turkey Shepard's Pie). Here is the list of ingredients I use:
CHICKEN SHEPARDS PIE
2-3 cups of mashed potatoes (amount dependent on whatever you prefer, or have on hand)
2-3 cups of cooked, shredded chicken (again, adjust to your preference and/or what you have on hand)
1 bag of mixed, frozen veggies
2 jars of chicken gravy
one prepared box or bag of chicken stuffing (again, adjust to your preference, yada, yada, yada)
When I make this I drag out a 13x9 pan and spray it with cooking spray (or rub it with butter, depending on my mood). I smoosh the potatoes into a layer on the bottom.
In a bowl, I stir together the chicken and the veggies, and from there I spread that mixture out over the potatoes.
I pour (EVENLY) the gravy on top of that, and then spread the prepared stuffing on top of the entire mess.
I put it in the oven at 375 degrees until the stuffing is brown up and has that nice crunchy texture going that people fight over on Thanksgiving. Take it out of the oven, let it sit for about 10 minutes to cool/settle, and then dig in!
So yummy. I want some now. Even if it means tasting burnt tongue for a week!
I do have another chicken recipe that is a family fave, but I'm saving that for another post.
How do you use your chicken when you cook an entire bird? Share your recipes in the comments section.
Happy day to you! Be good!