Friday, April 2, 2010

Economical Eats: OAM Chicken

It's the beginning of the month and that means tonight I am making some of my
OAM (Once A Month) Chicken

to use in my recipes throughout the monthAt the beginning of each month, I look through the pantry and see what I think I might wanna make this month. Then I determine how many of those dishes I will be putting chicken in and how much chicken I will need. Then I make my OAM Chicken. What does that have to do with eating economically you may ask. Well, it has MANY things to do with being economical.

#1. Time is Money and preparing my chicken once a month saves time.
#2. I use a Crockpot on high for 4 hours (appx) to cook my chicken.
Crockpot Usage Cost for 4 Hours appx.- 20 cents
Oven Usage for a Roast appx- 46 cents
#3. You can use this during the summer and it will not heat your house up, and therefore you will not be running the A/C any extra.

You Need:
A Crockpot (I am using my medium size this month. They're about $19 at Target.)
Some Chicken (I am using breasts. They're better for you and I got'em for $1.99/lb)
(Optional)2 Chicken Boullion Cubes

Place frozen chicken into the crockpot. Fill crockpot with water til chicken is just covered. (Drop in whole boullion cubes, if desired.) Place lid on crockpot and turn on High. Usually my crockpot will take 3.5 to 4 hours to cook 6 oversized chicken breasts. After chicken is through, use a slotted spoon to remove chicken from crockpot. The use a knife and fork to shread chicken. Place shredded chicken in plastic freezer bags. I like to store 1 cup portions. Makes it easy to measure later in the month. For 1 cup bags, pour 1/4 to 1/2 cup of the broth from the crockpot into the bag. Seal bag. (and I usually double bag at this point.) Store upright in your freezer. You can place your plastic freezer bags into cups before putting them in the freezer to make them stand up if you need to, but I usually use the slots in my door to make them stand. After shredding and saving all your chicken with broth, use plastic freezer bags to save a few more cups of broth (why buy this ever!?).

When you go to use the frozen chicken bags in your recipes throughout the month, just pop in the microwave on defrost. If broth is needed, add the whole bag to your recipes. If broth is not needed, drain drefrosted bag and then dump the chicken into your recipe. :)

Happy Cooking!

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