Happy New Year.
It's hard to believe that 2022 has come and gone already. In fact, I find I am still referring to this upcoming Spring/Summer production season as "next year": yikes! This time of year is often packed with reflection and resolutions. Round here, we are also attempting to make changes for a new and improved version of ourselves in this new year. Fortunately, the idea of using some sort of new-ness (new year, new home, new job, etc) as a marker to signal the beginning of establishing new habits actually has some validity. Check out Gretchen Rubin's page dedicated to habit development or pick up her book Better Than Before on more information on the topic. I read a few of her books and began listening to her podcast "The Happiness Project" a few years ago and it was life changing.
This year I am starting off with the "75 hard" challenge to improve my willpower and dedication to promises that I make to myself. Unfortunately, any sort of new habit change usually means additional items on your to-do list and less time for the things we already seem to struggle getting done. Ugh!
As farmers who are dedicated to wholesome foods that nourish our bodies, I am not willing to sacrifice our health with instant freezer meals or fast food. So, what's a girl to do?
Get Efficient in the Kitchen
What does efficiency in the kitchen look like? For me, it looks like planning ahead, fully utilizing nutrient-dense ingredients, and doing some prep work. AND I'm happy to share those plans with you!
So, this week, we are talking about 3 meals that can be made from one roast chicken. Now, if you have a large family, it might be best to make this TWO chickens. But that is still a lot of bang for your metaphorical and actual buck. Let's Dive in.
1. Roast Chicken
Try this recipe out for single pan Chicken dinner even on a busy weeknight. Remember, pasture-raised chicken has higher iron, is higher in Omega 3's and lower in omega 6's and is higher in antioxidants. So, w-
hat seems like a regular delicious roast dinner is actually a superfood power-meal! I'd suggest tossing together a greens side dish with seasonal greens, like Kale. Keep in mind, that Pasture Raised chicken doesn't take quite as long to cook as traditional grocery store whole chickens. So, you may want to start it a bit later in the day or use a digital crockpot that will keep it warm after 6 1/2ish hours.
2. Winter Kale Salad topped with shredded chicken
Remember the kale we already have on hand and the remnants of that chicken? Shred up any remaining meat and use it to top a bed of kale, microgreens, dried fruits and nuts of your choice, and cubed sweet potatoes. Better yet, you can make those sweet potatoes in a pressure cooker in the morning, leave them to cool throughout the day, and chop them up when making your salad. Finish the whole delicious meal with a bit of oil and vinegar or your favorite dressing. Yum!
Whenever is a good time for you, probably after prepping your salad, stick all of the remaining parts of your chicken in a crock pot or instant pot, cover with water, and make some bone broth. Check out this page for awesome instructions on how to make bone broth with either your slow cooker, pressure cooker, or the good ol' stock pot. Use that super nutritious bone broth in the winter veggie soup for tons of delicious, soul warming, goodness. Did you know bone broth has substantial protein? Not to mention abundant amino acids, gelatin, and collagen. This meal is a great way to have a "meatless" meal if that's something you are working on and still benefit from all the nutrients available in pasture-raised chicken.
Thank you for all your support of our small farm in 2022!
Here's to an even happier, healthier, and more delicious 2023!
The Stevens Family @ Rocking 5 S Farms