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It’s the first time I’ve tried the Frugal Foodie Challenge hosted by Food Revolution, an event that only made sense with how often that word is used around here! (Usually things like “Are you sure you’re being frugal sweetie?” and “Didn’t you say this was gonna be a frugal month princess?” uttered hopefully by the beleaguered D) This is one of my favourite recipes, it might sound a bit odd but I promise it’s very good and simple.

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The chicken I took from a chicken I had put in the crock pot whole and left there without anything else for a good 12 hours. Doing it this way doesn’t over cook the chicken, and it allows you to easily separate the bones and skin away from the meat with no effort and very little waste. You get a lot more meat than if you scrape the bones (at least my untalented at it self does), and the left over broth is really nice. If you ain’t using a crock pot, boil up some skinless chicken breasts or legs and thighs, whatever your preference is.Dark meat is as delicious as white meat in this, and dark meat is obviously cheaper. I used the equivalent of about two breasts worth of meat.

Chop up the chicken, and throw it in a bowl with one chopped up apple with the skin on, one to two handfuls of cranberries, raisins, or a combination of both (half of one of the foil packs of cranberries and golden raisins together is what I used), 1/4 tsp of cinnamon, a little pepper, a handful and a half of chopped walnuts, and about a half cup of low fat yogurt. Mix it all together, and put some on bread for sandwiches, chips, whatever you want. It fills us up very well, even D’s 6′ 4″ still eats like a half starved Navy man self. Don’t be fooled by it being healthy, it’s tasty!

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Chicken 3.00 (less if you use dark meat)
Apple .50
Yogurt .50
Cinnamon
Bread .50 (used 1/4th of a loaf so I called it .50 )
Cranberries and Raisins 1.00 (used half the package, y’all can probably find it cheaper)
Pepper
Walnuts 1.00 (rounded up a bit)

$6.50 at the very most

Florida has pretty expensive groceries.

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Roast chicken on Sundays is something that I love, it’s the perfect time for it. Grocery shopping is done on Friday, so the chicken is nice and fresh. The lawn guy we had before cut my herb garden down, but this Friday I grabbed a bunch of plants at the store and we have fresh herbs again!

                 

The chicken is simple, a little diced garlic, rosemary, dill, and lemon juice sprinkled over the top, big slices of onions in the pan, and a little olive oil. Into the oven it goes, to do it’s thing at 350 F while I attempt something that I haven’t tried before. D said he loves lemon meringue pie, and not being one to turn the nose upwards at a lemony treat I decided to find a recipe and try it!

The chicken was happily baking, so the next step would be to grab some lemons and get the juice out of the charming fruits. Like the corkscrew, there was no lemon zester in the house either so a grater had to do. Poor little things, don;t they look like they’ve had a rough day? Oh, the lemonanity! Juice, sugar, and zest starting to boil on the stove, it was time to separate the eggs!

                            

Juice, sugar, and zest starting to boil on the stove, it was time to separate the eggs! There’s something very graceful about separating eggs, it’s one of those little things that makes me feel accomplished for a moment. A reassuring bit of encouragement when doing something new was what I needed.

Hot juice and sugar into the eggs, and they didn’t cook! That was a really big worry, the technique isn’t a familiar one to me (y’all stop laughing, I’m new at some of this!) and it was nice to find out it wasn’t as difficult as I’d expected it to be. Aren’t these pink bowls D’s mom gave me for Christmas nice?

Whip until stiff peaks form, do those look like stiff peaks to you? The crust was a Pilsbury roll out, and to be blunt I don’t intend to try one of them again. It turned out bland and shrunk in a very off putting way. The idea was to have one less thing to worry about when trying a new pie, but the effort saved wasn’t worth the icky result.

It looks like a lemon meringue pie! Better yet, it tastes wonderful. The chicken was tender and juicy, and the pie set up nicely. The filling was only a little looser that was desirable, that’s only because it was getting later and we wanted to try some before going to snooze. It’s nice and firm now. The taste was perfect for our preferences, very sweet and tart from the zest. The meringue came out like… meringue, which surprised me as I’d never made it before. Light, fluffy, and not scorched at all!

                     

D’s plate is the one with the dark meat, his preference. It works out perfectly, he isn’t fond of white and I’m not fond of dark. He’s being kind enough in these pictures to hold the plates while I’m taking pics. The nice pic of the pie was taken by D, isn’t he good at it?

                                

Lemon Meringue Pie

Found on http://www.allrecipes.com

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 cup white sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 lemons, juiced and zested
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 egg yolks, beaten
  • 1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
  • 4 egg whites
  • 6 tablespoons white sugar

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
  2. To Make Lemon Filling: In a medium saucepan, whisk together 1 cup sugar, flour, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in water, lemon juice and lemon zest. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture comes to a boil. Stir in butter. Place egg yolks in a small bowl and gradually whisk in 1/2 cup of hot sugar mixture. Whisk egg yolk mixture back into remaining sugar mixture. Bring to a boil and continue to cook while stirring constantly until thick. Remove from heat. Pour filling into baked pastry shell.
  3. To Make Meringue: In a large glass or metal bowl, whip egg whites until foamy. Add sugar gradually, and continue to whip until stiff peaks form. Spread meringue over pie, sealing the edges at the crust.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 10 minutes, or until meringue is golden brown.