Yes, I recently had a conversation with my rotisserie chicken. No, it didn’t involve hallucinogenics (other than the trance I was in after smelling its tasty, chickeny goodness after returning from the store. Hot dang, that scent is to die for).
Instead, it involved me drooling over the possibilities of using a $7.50 rotisserie chicken for four meals.
Yup, you read that right — we’re going to get four different meals (granted, that’s for two people) out of one chicken. That puts, arguably, the cost per meal per person at approximately $0.93. Well, in terms of protein. I think my budget can handle that!
Today’s post will focus on how to break up your rotisserie chicken into meat (and bones!) that you can use for multiple meals, as well as (eventually) a delicious pot of chicken stock for soups, flavorings and more. Some easy steps to follow:
- Cut the string tying your chicken’s wings / legs back, and dispose of it. You can also easily use the container’s plastic lid to hold your chicken pieces. (I recommend tucking the bare bones straight into a heavy-duty, freezer-friendly Ziploc, where you can store them until you’re ready to make stock.)
- Cut the breast pieces first — this is similar to carving a turkey. Simply slice down the center bone, then make a deep perpendicular cut along the side of the breast. Afterward, you can remove the whole breast, or easily shred it into strips / pieces.
3. Begin shredding / tearing the pieces by hand. Keep collecting your strips of shredded chicken in the plastic rotisserie lid, and shred, baby, shred. You should end up with meat for cooking at least 3-4 dinners for two. I usually discard the skin (the meat’s got the flavor, and skin adds unnecessary fat), but have no qualms with as much dark meat as I can possibly get. As you attack each bone and section, add the bones to your “Stock-to-Be” bag.
From this point on, you can choose to either freeze the entire bag of meat, or freeze the meat in individual, meal-size portions. That way, you’ll only thaw as much as you need, and your chicken doesn’t have to through a Han Solo cycle of freeze-unfreeze-freeze-unfreeze. (A surefire way to get semi-nasty gray-ish chicken. If you’re into that inside-of-a-McNugget sort of thing, then by all means, play Frankenstein as often as possible.)
I’ll continue with a series of posts on meals using the rotisserie chicken meat. A sneak preview: A Chef’s Salad, Chipotle-Lime Chicken Quesadillas, and Seriously-From-Scratch Chicken and Mushroom Pizza. (And, eventually, Homemade Soup Stock.) Get excited!