We have found it economical to buy 10 pounds of chicken leg quarters at a time. They come in a bag at Walmart for $4.70. Since there are only two of us, we get a lot of use out of one bag. Usually we can use it up in the two weeks between shopping days. I wash it and re-package it into three zipper bags of two leg quarters each, and freeze those. There are usually 2-3 leg quarters left, and I start with those.
First, I make roasted chicken. The following is one of our favorites:
Put the marinade ingredients in a Pyrex baking dish and add the chicken. Turn the meat so it is evenly moistened. Let it stand in the refrigerator for four hours or all day. Then sprinkle it with more salt and pepper, turn the meat once more, and cover tightly. Foil is okay if you don't have a good lid. Bake at 350 degrees F, basting every 15 minutes, for 1 1/2 hours. You can do it in less time if you like it less done. We like it falling off the bones. Serve with brown rice and a salad of your choice. Any leftover meat makes good sandwiches the next day. We like whole wheat bread and Dijon mustard (from the dollar store, of course) on ours, and lettuce if we have any.
When we are ready for a Hawaiian dinner, I make this:
Start in the morning, or the morning before, by mixing soy sauce, brown sugar, powdered ginger and crushed garlic to your taste. I make mine fairly sweet, which is probably not authentic. I use equal amounts of soy sauce and brown sugar, but there again, this is one of those negotiable recipes. Soak cut up chicken pieces in this mixture at least 12 hours. Twenty-four hours is at least as good, and maybe better. Now bake it for 1 1/2 hours or put it in a slow cooker while you go to work. We have this with brown rice with soy sauce and usually baked winter squash. Sweet potatoes would be more authentic, but in the north we don't have them over winter.
When we get into an Asian mood, we have tempura. When I was in high school we had a neighbor who ran her own Japanese restaurant. Miyoko would make a big platter of tempura on her day off and bring it to Clara and Phil's house, next door to our house. The entire neighborhood would converge and devour!
Stir together 1 cup all-purpose flour, 2 tablespoons corn starch, a cup of very cold or ice water, and an egg yolk. Now beat two egg whites stiff and gently fold them in. Heat an inch of lard or cooking oil in a Dutch oven to 400 degrees (watch it closely!) Add a tsp. of salt to help prevent spatters. While it's heating, cut up the chicken in bite-sized pieces. Also cut up some vegetables. Carrots are incredible this way! So is broccoli, but lots of them are. I usually have celery on hand and maybe a bell pepper. I always have winter squash, and the sweetness goes really well with the soy sauce dip. Don't use any watery veggies like cherry tomatoes, stick with the dry stuff. When the fat is hot enough, start dipping pieces of vegetables and meat in the batter and carefully place them in the hot fat. Cook until the batter is a fairly deep brown, and then drain them on newspapers or paper towels while you cook some more. Dip these in the following:
In a small pan mix a cup of water, 1/4 tsp. of dry sherry, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1 tsp. sugar and 1 chicken-flavored bouillon cube or a tsp. or the granules. Bring to a boil and you're done. This makes enough for two hearty eaters. I don't make any side dishes except a cup of tea, because when we eat tempura we don't want anything else!
When we're feeling really THRIFTY, I make:
Wash off your chicken pieces and dry them well. Dip in milk, then in bread crumbs (made from leftover biscuits, crackers, stale bread, etc) that are seasoned with salt and pepper. To 1 cup of crumbs, I usually add 1 tsp. salt and 1/4 tsp. black pepper. You can also add a Tbsp. of dried parsley if you have lots. Brown in hot fat for about 5-7 minutes or until lightly browned. Then lay them on a greased baking sheet and bake at 325 degrees F until done the way you like it. If you bake it until quite tender, it's a lot like KFC. Our neighbor, Leota, who was born about 1905, used to make big batches of this even when she lived alone. Then she could quickly reheat one piece for dinner. The leftovers are also good chopped and mixed with mayonnaise or salad dressing and chopped celery for a sandwich filling. I know these recipes mostly take a lot of cooking time, and you may not have that much time. So make these recipes up on your day off and reheat them during the week. They're every bit as good.
Altogether, that ten-pound bag makes generous main dish servings for about 20 hearty eaters, or .23 per serving plus extras. We buy soy sauce at Costco in the half-gallon, which saves a bit. I hope you enjoy these recipes as much as we do.
By Coreen from Rupert, ID
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I have been buying those leg quarters too. I cut the meat off the bone and use it in curries. I can't WAIT to try your recipes.
Also here is my favorite recipe for chicken with bone.
Chicken and Rice Soup Recipe
This is a recipe from my friend Sherri. This is so good my little toddler devours 2 or 3 bowls.
1 whole chicken ( you can use breasts if you prefer)
1 large or 2 small onions quartered or halved
1 -2 carrots peeled and cut into halves
2 stalks of celery
several cloves of garlic
2 cans cream or celery soup (don't use Walmart home brand, spend the extra cents for the Campbells it really improves the flavor)
Mixed veggies - optional
Rice or Egg Noodles ( i use about 1.5 cups of uncooked rice)
Place chicken, salt, onions, carrots, celery and garlic in large stock pot and cover with cold water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and slow cook for 2 - 3 hours until chicken is near falling off the bone. This is the most important step in preparing the soup. If you don-t flavor it with these veggies or don't allow it to slow cook, it doesn't taste as good.
Remove chicken, cool, and debone.
Strain out veggies and discard.
Add cream of celery soup to the broth. Also, I start with one can and add a 2nd depending on how much broth I have, but I usually use 2 cans.
Allow to heat through for about 10 minutes; add garlic powder to your taste. A little more salt is good too.
Add fresh or frozen mixed veggies if desired (sometimes I do and sometimes I don't)
If using rice, add about 30- 40 minutes before veggies are due to be cooked
If using noodles, add about 10 minutes before veggies are due to be cooked (depends on if you use fresh or frozen veggies/ frozen cook more quickly).
Add chicken when soup is about 10 - 15 minutes away from being done. That way it won-t overcook the chicken.
Coreen, what a chicken whiz you are! All the recipes sound great, however I'm extremely allergic to garlic, so would have to leave that out of any recipes or I'd be one sick chicken!
Last night I used a marinade I bought over the counter Badia's Mojo Marinade and it rocked. I let my cut up chicken soak in it for the day and then I broiled it 20 minutes on one side and then 15 on the other. It totally rocked and tasted like it came off of the grill on a summer's day.
The marinade did contain MSG, so I am going to attempt to make it myself. I found this marinade online that was seems super close, however it has lime juice instead of orange juice (oj is in the mojo). But I don't buy orange juice regularly (nor grapefruit, but I could probably buy a can and leave it in the fridge for a while).
4 grapefruit, zest and juice
2 limes, zest and juice
1 small white onion, fine julienne
1 tsp garlic, chopped
2 tbs cider vinegar
6 tbs olive oil
1/4 tsp cracked black pepper
salt to taste
I love to make apricot chicken we dont have it often but when you have chicken and dont know what to do with it then this is easy and cheap....
5 chicken thighs or 4 chicken breasts
1 tin of apricot necta
1 pckt of french onion soup ( dry)
1 glove of garlic crushed
1 cup mushrooms ( optinal)
parsley to serve
Brown your chicken in some oil , drain off any fat and add your onions and mushrooms and garlic until tender. In a saucepan add your apricot necter and french onion soup and stir until thickened .... place chicken, onions, mushrooms in a oven safe dish and pour over your apricot necter and cook in the oven until chicken is cooked through.... serve with rice or mashed potatoe and steamed veg
This is adapted from an old Weight Watcher's recipe. All you do is lay your pieces of chicken in a pan, sprinkle a little soy sauce over them, then pour one can of DIET orange soda (if you use regular soda, he sugars will boil down and burn before the chicken is done - therefore, use only DIET orange soda.) Bake until the chicken is fork-tender (about 1-1.2 hours). It will turn out lip-smacking good and good FOR you, too!
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