We are still fairly new to the non vegetarian lifestyle. Up until about 6 months ago my husband and children were vegetarians. I was not but never cooked meat in the house. In a quest to eat more whole foods and natural non processed foods my family decided to eat meat at home. We purchase our chickens and grass fed beef through a buying co-op with Forks Farm. We’ve visited the farm twice and had the pleasure of camping on their lovely grounds both times. My lovely friend Amy over at MyHomegrown has some beautiful pictures of the farm from our last trip. I truly enjoy knowing where our food comes from and how it’s lived before it makes its way onto my plate.
Now back to the chicken. I love to cook but since I haven’t really cooked meat in about 11 years it’s been a fun new learning experience for me. Lately I’ve been on a boiled chicken kick. I’ve been using an “old fashioned” boiled chicken recipe from a 1950s cook book I picked up at a garage sale (more on that another day) as a basis for two nights of dinner from one chicken. The first night’s dinner is the boiled chicken with veggies cooked in the cooking liquid. It’s so super simple.
Dinner #1 – Old Fashioned Boiled Chicken.
- 1 Chicken (3-5 lbs)
- 1 Onion cut into chunks
- 6 Carrots (or how ever many you’d like)
- 4 Potatoes cut into quarters
- 1 tsp salt
Place chicken in a stock pot and cover with cold water. Place the pot on the stove and bring to a boil. Once the water is boiling turn down to low/simmer and simmer for 4 hours, adding the salt in the last hour. Remove the chicken from the pot, the meat should be falling off the bones, and place on a serving dish. Place the veggies, in the stock pot with the cooking juices and boil for 15 to 20 minutes until all of the vegetables are tender. Scoop the veggies out of the stock with a strainer, don’t dump the liquid it will be used to make dinner #2, and serve with the chicken.
Dinner #2 – Chicken and Kale Soup
- Cooking liquid from dinner #1
- Any left over chicken from dinner #1 (chopped)
- 1 Onion coarsely chopped
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 4 carrots chopped in rounds
- 2 bunches of Kale (remove stems and chop)
- 1 tsp thyme
- salt and pepper
- dry pasta (optional)
Strain the cooking liquid from dinner #1 and return to the stock pot and reserve any strained off chunks of meat. Put any strained off chunks of chicken, along with any leftover chicken into the stock pot. If you need more liquid simply add some water. Next add the vegetables, garlic, salt, pepper and thyme. Bring the mixture to a boil and then reduce the heat. Simmer on low for at least an hour but longer if you’d like. About 30 minutes before serving add the pasta, if desired. Enjoy.