I am reminded of my mother, who scoffed at TV dinners and the waste of them. And I reflect on the amount of time I have spent pondering nutrition labels on packaged foods—rejecting most if more than five ingredients were listed. It becomes more than an issue of economy, because ultimately, I want to know what goes into my mouth to feed my body.
Chicken and Rice Casserole
3 cups uncooked rice (I like the Organic Rice Medley from Costco which is a combination of four grains, including brown, red and wild rice)
1 cup chicken drippings, fat removed, from roast chicken
6 cups water
1 large carrot, chopped into small dice
1 teaspoon herbs de Provence
1 teaspoon sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup frozen petite peas
2 ½ cups chopped chicken, including white and dark meat
1 cup grated parmesan
1 cup sour cream
In three quart saucepan, add water to rice. Add chicken drippings. Add seasonings. Add carrot dice. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer and cover until rice has fully absorbed the water, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
In a large bowl, mix cooked rice and carrots with chopped chicken, frozen peas, grated parmesan and sour cream.
Spoon mixture into pint containers, cover and freeze until ready to use. I stick a strip of masking tape on the lid to label contents and add date. Makes 5 pints, 10 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes. Cook time: 45 minutes to 1 hour. Serving size: 1 cup
Amazingly, I still have one chicken breast left. I’ll make a chicken salad with that.
Nice lunch on a couple of Romaine leaves.
1 ½ cups white meat chicken
1 ¼ cups celery (about three stalks chopped in small dice)
½ cup onion (about ¼ medium sweet onion)
½ cup dried cranberries
1/3 cup chopped parsley
¼ cup mayonnaise
1/3 cup sour cream
½ teaspoon herbs the Provence
½ teaspoon salt
¼ cup chopped deli style jalapeño slices
Mix all together. Makes four cups chicken salad. Serving size: 1 cup.
Prep. Time: 15 minutes
When I finished putting all this in assorted containers, stacking them in the freezer and arranging a lunch with half of the chicken salad, I thought of the miracle of the loaves and fishes and thought: quite a remarkable chicken for $4.50! Roast dinner for two the first night, chicken sandwiches for lunch the next day, ½ gallon chicken stock, one pint bone meal (for the dog), ten servings chicken/rice casserole, four serving chicken salad—all from one lowly fryer.