Sometimes I learn the most valuable things on other people’s blogs. This one is so simple, and yet mildly life-altering for me-how to cook a chicken in a crockpot in the most trivial fashion imaginable. I learned this from Wardeh’s blog post on crockpot chickens. It turns out, you just throw an entire chicken (or two, if they’ll fit in your crockpot), maybe go so far as to toss some salt and pepper in there, turn it on, and that’s it. Either cooking them overnight or all day renders ready-to-go chicken that can be used in anything. They create their own liquid, so there is nothing else to add.
When it’s done cooking, I take it out and let it cool for a bit. Then I quickly pick all the good meat off the bones and set aside for our uses. The cruddier meat I set aside for the dogs, I’ll get 1-2 meals’ worth of meat for them from one chicken! The oily stock that comes off the chicken I might save for soup base, or give it to the dogs. The bones get thrown away (cooked bones no good for dogs, they splinter and can puncture their intestines…). I would say there is, maybe, a 15-20 minute time investment in the whole thing.
This is so cool, before I read this, I had no idea it was so easy. I had visions of roasting the chicken in the oven, basting it, tending to it, keeping an eye on its temperature– a lot of work and being in the house all day just to get some chicken ready for a recipe. So, I’d steered clear of things that call for roasted, chopped chicken.
But, now, with this, I find there are lots of things I can do with the chicken, I can get several meals out of it. Like, chicken soup, chicken casserole, chicken salad, chicken sandwiches, chicken quesadillas, chicken chili, and chicken enchiladas. So, that’s what’s on the menu for today, and possibly tomorrow: something with chicken in it, as I have one in a crockpot this morning.