How Funky Is Your Chicken?

Last week I bought a whole chicken at the Traders Point farmers market. It appeared skinny and had a long neck attached. My first question to myself was, “Self, how did this farmer so effectively cross-breed giraffes with chickens?” and my next question was, “Self, do you think that the neck still being on this chicken indicates that we are going to have to pull guts out of it before we can roast it?”

Thankfully, there were no guts inside. It’s all fun and games until I have to touch innards.

The chicken was also very skinny. You get used to seeing store-bought chickens, which spend their whole lives packed into a cage with a billion other chickens, being fed trash and pooping on each other and getting fat. I know, isn’t that appetizing? Anyway, this chicken was even skinnier than the farm chickens we bought last year.

However, when roasted, I noticed that for it’s skinny size, the chicken actually had a LOT of breast meat. A. LOT. It reminded me of that scene in my favorite movie, “When Harry Met Sally.” You know, where Marie is trying on her wedding dress and Sally is asking what Harry’s new girlfriend is like. Marie says, “Thin, pretty, big [chest]. You know, your basic nightmare.”

I was glad the chicken had a lot of meat on it (absolutely NO fat that I could tell, this chicken was in great shape!) because I spent $10.74 of my $35 per week grocery budget on it. I know you are thinking, “GIRL! What is your damage that you are spending one third of your grocery budget on a single chicken!!!!!?!?!?!?!?!?!?!?” Well, I’m trying to aim for healthy meats and etc because of some health issues that are present in my family and Josh’s family, it’s becoming increasingly important to me to care for our health in this way. I’m not saying every family has to do that.

Since the chicken was so INSANELY expensive, I had to make it stretch for five dinners. Here is how I did that:

Dinner One:
Roast chicken with mashed potatoes and green beans

Dinner Two:
Chicken and Mushrooms over Spaetzle (German noodles) with broccoli

Dinner Three:
Cheese Grits casserole with chicken and broccoli

Dinner Four:
The other half of Dinner Two

Dinner Five:
The other half of Dinner Three

In between Dinners 3,4, and 5 we will have other things, meatless. I also plan to make a big pot of chicken stock out of the bones and the weirdly long chicken neck, then I will strain the bones and neck out and use the stock as a base for a new soup recipe my aunt Catherine sent me.

It’s always interesting to see how different families eat. I like to serve at least half the dinner plate with green vegetables, and I do stretch meat or do meatless dishes so I have more in my budget for vegetables and the whole organic project.

This long saga of our skinny chicken has now come to a close.

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