a "been-there" mom of six offers encouragement
to wives, young mothers, and those not so young,
and simple common-sense approaches to
the "ings" of life:
child-rearing (hints and helps), homemaking (all areas),
cooking (simple, cheap, and do-it-yourself)
making (toys and gifts), preparing (for the unexpected),
maintaining (sanity and peace in this increasingly crazy world) and more---
all aspects of making the most of making do on little---
and having fun in the process.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Four Easy Chicken Meals + more

Obviously I've always liked chicken!

Quick, Easy, Neat and Cheep Cheap

Here is another of my long time favorite cooking-day projects that, once done, will provide several different meals, quickly. easily, neatly and cheaply---four of my favorite words!

Good eating does not have to be elaborate or expensive.

Four frugal words: quick takes little time, easy takes little effort, neat takes little clean-up, cheap takes little money!

Basic Chicken Mix
11 pounds of chicken (about 4 medium fryers) cut up
4 quarts cold water
3 T. parsley flakes
4 carrots, peeled and chopped
4 tsp salt
2 tsp basil (if desired)
1/2 tsp black pepper

Combine all ingredients in large pot. Cover and cook over high heat until water boils. Simmer until meat is tender, about 1-1/2 hours. Remove from heat and cool some. Strain broth and refrigerate until fat can be skimmed off. Cool chicken, remove bones and skin, and cut into small pieces.  Put chicken into freezer containers in two-cup portions. Place skimmed chicken broth, along with the carrots, in two-cup portions, in freezer containers.  Label and date containers and freeze. Use within three months.

Chicken Continental - a staple when our family was young
1 can cream of chicken soup, undiluted
1 T grated onion
1 T parsley flakes
1 tsp salt
dash of pepper
1/4 tsp thyme, if desired
2 cups chicken broth, thawed
2 cups chicken pieces, thawed
2 cups instant rice (right from the box)
In medium bowl, combine soup, seasonings and broth. Stir until blended. Stir in chicken and instant rice. Place in lightly buttered 2-quart casserole dish. Cover and bake at 375 degrees for 30 minutes. 6 servings.

Chicken of the Kings - on a budget
1/2 cup butter or margarine
1 cup chopped celery
1 small can mushroom pieces or fresh mushrooms, sliced
1/2 cup flour
2 cups chicken broth, thawed
2 cups chicken pieces, thawed
1 cup milk
1/4 cup chopped pimiento, if desired
1 T parsley flakes
Cooked Rice
Melt margarine in large frying pan. Add celery and mushrooms. Saute until tender. Blend in flour and let simmer one minute. Slowly stir in chicken broth and milk. Cook 3-5 minutes stirring constantly until thick.
Stir in chicken, parsley and pimiento. Simmer 10 minutes. Serve over cooked rice. 6 servings.

Poppy Seed Chicken - a family favorite
White sauce ( recipe below)
1-1/2 cups cooked chicken pieces, thawed
1-1/2 cups chicken broth, thawed
8 oz. container sour cream
1 T poppy seeds
Cooked Rice or Hot Noodles
Make white sauce below.

White Sauce
Melt 1/2 cup margarine in medium-large pan. Combine 1/2 cup flour, 1/2 tsp salt and black pepper to taste and slowly stir into melted margarine, stirring constantly until starting to brown. Slowly add 3 cups milk, and continue to stir until sauce thickens. Stir in remaining ingredients, except rice. Simmer, do not boil, for a few minutes until hot. Serve over hot rice or noodles.

BBQ Chicken - kids love it !
Combine cooked chicken pieces in barbecue sauce and heat thoroughly.  Serve on buns or over rice or noodles. (Note: You can also use Spam, cut into matchstick-size pieces.)

Good eating does not have to be elaborate or expensive.
I get really frustrated when I see articles such as "Feed Your Family of Four on only $200 per week," like that is some great accomplishment.  For years that was my monthly food budget, and we did just fine.

'til we eat again,
              Simply, Gail

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