How to turn two chickens into four family meals … our shortcut
What would you think if we told you that we could set you up with tasty dinners for the next four nights with absolutely minimal work on your part? Well keep on reading because we’re going to show you how to turn two chickens into some seriously tasty family fare.
Sunday is traditionally the day of the big family roast, so roast chicken with veggies will be the first of your four meals, but rather than just one chook, cook two. This will give you leftovers to make the rest of your meals with, or if you want to really make your life super-simple you can grab a couple of barbecued chickens from your local Hill Street store and use those instead. Enjoy your roast chicken dinner and then put any leftover chicken into a container to be used later. You should also refrigerate the second chicken. Don’t throw away the chicken bones, you’re going to use them later in the week too.
Monday night’s dinner is a comfort food classic – Baked Chicken Pasta. All you need is 1 ½ cups of cooked chicken, a packet of dried pasta, 1 ½ cups grated mozzarella, ½ cup grated Parmesan, ½ teaspoon each of dried basil and oregano and 1 ½ cups of passata. Cook the pasta according to the packet directions and drain. Then combine everything except the parmesan in a large bowl, stirring to ensure everything is well coated. Transfer to an oven-safe dish, sprinkle with the parmesan and cook in a 180C oven for 30 minutes or until the cheese is melted and everything is hot.
Tuesday night is a delicious Chicken Noodle Soup and this is where the chicken bones that you saved come in. Remove all the meat from the chicken and put the bones into a large pot. Add 8 cups of chicken stock and bring to a simmer. Cook for 20 minutes. While the chicken is simmering, cook 2 packets of instant noodles according to the packet directions but don’t use the flavouring. Drain noodles and set aside. Strain the chicken broth through a sieve into a saucepan. Add 2 peeled and sliced carrots and 2 stalks of sliced celery and simmer until the vegetables are tender. Add 2 cups of shredded chicken and the noodles and serve in bowls.
On Wednesday it’s quesadilla time! Combine the remaining chicken with your choice of fillings; this is a great opportunity to use up leftover bits and pieces in your fridge or pantry like mushrooms, capsicum, cheese, herbs, and vegetables. Place a tortilla in a large frying pan with a little olive oil. Add chicken and other toppings to half the tortilla and fold the other half over the top. Cook until the cheese is melted and the underside is browned. Serve with sour cream, guacamole or salsa.