Free Range Organic Chicken Was the Better Bargain!
Free Range Organic Chicken Was the Better Bargain! Who knew, right? To be honest, I was completely floored at the difference in price and the natural chicken is obviously the better choice. My frugality led me to browse the meat market since I had the infamous H-E-B $3 off any fresh beef, chicken or seafood catalina coupon.
I never, ever gave a thought to free range, organic or natural selections of meats until yesterday at my local store. I was so blown away by the difference in cost that I could not leave the store without this chicken and then come home and tell you all about it!
So you know my Korean frugal side was doing calculations while standing in front of the meat cooler full of this glorious natural chicken! The price of this particular hen is $5.01 (priced at $1.54 per pound so my chicken weighs 3.25 lbs) and with my $3 off coupon and H-E-B VPP discount of 10% off (VPP = valued partner perk – my hubby is an employee) I paid just $1.51 for this heavenly bird!
I am going to continue to buy these incredible birds because at $1.54 per pound that’s not expensive! Especially considering that I will be using the entire bird to make bone broth. I paid far more per pound for the unsmoked pork hocks, pig feet and odds and ends meats I used to make my pork bone broth this week!
The Tyson chicken patties are priced at $4.98 at my store and each 26 oz bag usually contains 10 patties which will feed my family of 5 just one meal. We would also end up eating more carbs with this meal and I am pretty sure the breading on the chicken patty is a wheat or other gluten so not gluten free. We are not strictly following a gluten free diet but I notice a difference/improvement in my oldest child’s moodiness and behavior when he eats more of the gluten free foods. He’s a hyperactive child but hubby and I refuse to medicate him unless absolutely necessary.
I can easily make 2 meals of the whole chicken with just the meat alone. I will also use the carcass to make my chicken bone broth and that will turn into several homemade “ramyun” meals. I would say that I could get 3 – 4 family meals out of just one whole chicken versus getting only one meal from the processed chicken patties.
100% All Natural Ingredients
Seriously? Did you see it on the front side of the package of Tyson Chicken Patties? 100% all natural ingredients, as opposed to what, Tyson? Unnatural ingredients? Of course it’s all natural, we don’t eat synthetic foods although there is plenty of controversy over GMOs, etc.
Does this marketing tactic actually work? Did anyone else see that on the package and wonder if Tyson was trying to imply that other brands use artificial chicken and call it chicken? Maybe it was just me, and if so, that’s okay but I want to point it out to you now so you can think of me and this post and laugh hysterically like the minion below the next time you walk by the freezer case and see it! At least that is how I will be laughing and I don’t care if people stare! Laughter is good medicine!
Recipes to use up your whole chicken –
Meal Idea #1 – Bake or Boil
I would recommend the first recipe to be either a baked chicken lightly seasoned and stuffed with aromatic vegetables like celery, carrots and onion in the body cavity. Serve with a light salad or steamed vegetables. Save the pan drippings (fat in the pan) for your bone broth since you won’t have chicken skin to add fat to your broth.
***Save your giblets, neckbone, spine and any other various parts you won’t eat or cook for this particular meal in a freezer bag and freeze for later use to make Chicken Bone Broth***
Korean Chicken Soup
To eat Korean style Chicken Soup then thoroughly wash/rinse the whole chicken and place in a large stock pot. Cover with water and boil until the meat literally falls off the bone, DO NOT ADD SEASONINGS OR SALT.
Serve portions of boiled chicken on a plate or in a bowl with a small dish of kosher salt for dipping your meat to season tableside. Laden the chicken broth into individual serving bowls and garnish with garlic, chopped green onion, salt and pepper and serve with the meal. Serve this meal with freshly cooked brown rice and banchan side dishes and kimchi.
***Reserve the leftover chicken broth from this meal to use when making your chicken bone broth later. This broth from your boiled chicken contains all of the fat from the skin and you want that fat when you make the bone broth.
What’s the difference? The bone broth is cooked with joints from the animal which contains cartilage and the broth you made from this meal contains fat and chicken flavoring from the meats but it wasn’t cooked/simmered long enough to extract ALL of the goodness from the bones. It takes a few hours to extract all of the collagen and other goodness from bones so there is a HUGE difference between a simple broth and nourishing bone broth.
You could go ahead and make bone broth after serving your portions for your meal. Simply follow the recipe below and you should have nourishing and healing bone broth completed by bedtime!***
Meal Idea #2 – My Dump Chicken Soup Recipe
- 8 – 10 ounces total of grilled or boiled chicken (2 – oz per serving)
- (1) can diced tomatoes with green chiles (Red & Gold is my favorite brand for this recipe)
- (1) 15 oz can low sodium yellow corn (drained and rinsed to remove excess salt, you can use fresh corn cut off the cob too)
- (1) 15 oz can low sodium black beans (drained and rinsed to remove excess salt, or use dried beans that you soaked and cooked prior to this recipe)
- (1) quart chicken bone broth (Use an organic and low sodium broth if you don’t have bone broth on hand)
- (1) medium shallot finely chopped (I would have used a regular onion if I didn’t have a shallot. I use them because they don’t make me cry my eyes out when I chop them up!)
- (1) packet Goya Sazon seasoning (The one that says con culantro y achiote…btw…I have NO idea what achiote really is but it all tastes great!
- (4 to 4.5) cups water (Depending on how much broth you like with your soup….I am a soupy/broth drinking kind of girl so I like my soup to have lots of liquid)
- (1) cup steamed and cooled brown rice (did you know that rice is gluten free?)
- (1 to 2) teaspoons…not tablespoons….teaspoons of cumin (This is for smoky flavor….you can definitely omit this if cumin is not your cup of tea)
- Kosher salt to taste (Be sure and wait to taste the soup after it’s been cooking for about 15 minutes and when the zucchini is soft otherwise you might over season and ruin the whole batch…I’ve done that a time or two)
- (3) cups of your favorite chopped fresh vegetables (I use zucchini, carrots, Korean radish, whatever I have on hand)
- 1 bay leaf
- Fresh cracked black pepper
Simply Dump and Warm Through
All you have to do is literally DUMP the ingredients into a large pot and warm through until the vegetables are crisp tender. If you use zucchini or any other soft vegetable in this recipe then add it after warming up the soup. You don’t want to eat “mushy” vegetables as they are not very appetizing. The chicken is fully cooked so there’s no need to boil the hell outta this soup, just warm it up so it’s nice and hot and then serve.
I typically serve my soup with shredded cheese (use something that melts well like mozzarella or colby jack) and slices of avocado with tortilla chips. I would guesstimate that this soup makes between 8-10 servings if you eat 2-3 bowls at a time like I do otherwise it would make about 20 (1/2 cup) servings. You can freeze leftover soup and it would be perfect with a small salad for a light lunch or dinner.
***I made this video over a year ago, long before I took serious interest in getting my body healthy. I will be making a new version of this recipe soon! I added the video here so you could see how easy it is to make this soup, you literally dump it and go!***
My Chicken Bone Broth Recipe
- Carcass, or carcasses if you have more than one, of organic, free range whole cooked chicken (it’s better to use the entire chicken but since the chicken is getting stretched in multiple meals, using just the carcass with the cartilage and little bits of meat left on the bones is fine)
- Organ meats like the giblet packet that comes in the cavity of most whole chickens we purchase
- The neckbone or spine of the chicken that came with the whole chicken
- 1 package or 1 lb of chicken feet (try to find organic and free range, but if it’s not available then use whatever you can find)
- 1 package of chicken neckbones, spines, combs (red part on the head of a rooster) or any other cartilage part you can find (if you can’t find any of these “additional parts” then just use the whole chicken instead of just the carcass)
- 1 onion
- 1 carrot
- 1 stalk celery
- 1 tbsp. whole peppercorns
- 1 – 2 bay leaves
- 1 tsp. organic apple cider vinegar (non-organic is fine too and the difference is organic is made with pesticide and chemical free grown apples)
- ***It’s important to use an organic, free range chicken because you will be cooking down this chicken to extract it’s cartilage, collagen and minerals from it’s bones. Mammals store toxins, chemicals and other harmful substances in our bodies in our fat and free radicals that cause cancer hide out in our cartilage so make sure you use a chicken that hasn’t been pumped full of “crap” because you will in fact be extracting it and putting it into your body when you eat the bone broth. Spend the extra time and money to buy the best because you and your health are worth every single penny and every moment of that time!***
- Take the carcass of the chicken and place it in a large stock pot. If you don’t have an extra large stock pot then you can break down the carcass as much as possible so it can wedge down into a pot. Be sure and leave the ligaments and cartilage in the pot because you want to boil all of the goodness out of those parts!
- Wash the giblets, neckbone, spine, feet and any other “additional parts” you will use in your bone broth. Drain and place in the pot with the carcass.
- Chop the vegetables into small pieces and place in the pot.
- Add the whole peppercorns, bay leaf and apple cider vinegar to the pot. (I don’t use garlic in this particular bone broth because chicken is very mild in flavor and a strong garlic can really alter the final flavor profile. If I want to use fresh garlic, I add it to my own individual serving bowl)
- Cover everything with enough water to cover completely. (Some experts say to use purified water when making your broth because our tap water is not suitable with it’s impurities and minerals. I am still researching and deciding where I stand so for now, I use the tap water from my faucet.)
- Simmer over low to medium-low heat for 4 – 6 hours.
I do not recommend using a crockpot to make bone broth because you cannot easily control the cooking temperature. Cooking with a crockpot is easier but making your own bone broth is not difficult so take the time to make it stovetop for your own benefit to ensure you really do extract everything live giving and nourishing from that animal!
Salt and season your bone broth as you use it
DO NOT ADD SALT to your bone broth! It can be used to make soups, gravies and other various uses in place of store bought stock. Taste and season the stock as you use it in each recipe to avoid overloading on sodium. Canned vegetables, gravy packets and rice and pastas can contain quite a bit of sodium so wait to add salt after tasting it in each recipe.
Simmering is the best heating temperature for extracting all of the gelatinous goodness from the bones so make sure you only see slight bubbles, or count one to two bubbles per second. Think bloop – bloop, pause, bloop – bloop, pause.
Once it’s simmered a full four hours and no more than 6, allow it cool completely on top of your stove. Pour it through a strainer to have a clear broth and place in an airtight container or jar and store in the fridge. Do not skim off the fat because your body needs the fat to burn fat! Besides this fat is the good kind of fat so don’t pour it off!
I Dare You! Challenge Issued!!
Eat the feet and cartilage if you dare! I am issuing a challenge since I always eat the cartilage of every bone I boil! Ewwww!! Yea but I don’t have arthritis and I will be super healthy for it! I write if you dare because it’s not common for us to eat the entire animal in the West but people all the world have no qualms about eating every part of the animal and for good reason too! And I am not talking about lack of availability of food bring the reason either!
The collagen in cartilage is so good for our own joints and gut health. If you want to know more about the healing power of bone broth then watch this incredible talk Bone Broth and Health: A Look at the Science given by The Naughty Nutrionist Kaayla Daniel, Ph.D., CCN that I watched on YouTube! I love her sense of humor and tongue in cheek jokes!
I have read so much lately about how all diseases begin in the gut and 2/3 of my own diseases were caused by what I put into my gut so it makes good sense to promote good gut health and I really love a good, tasty, hearty and full bodied broth for my soups. I don’t want to drink flavored water, especially now that I voluntarily restricted my calorie intake so making sure every bite is nutritious is important to me!
Take the time to invest in your health
I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again, well in this case, I’ll write it again! You can never buy more health or more time with money so take the time to take good care of yourself. This is the year of my life where I am really driving this message home to not only you but more for my own benefit. As a busy mother of 3, I sometimes make excuses as to why I can’t take proper care of myself and I am not doing anyone any favors when I neglect myself in this way.
My whole family has been impacted by the changes in our diet and it’s been nothing but positive since the change! My kids stop craving sugar and I stopped drinking diet sodas without putting much effort to quit drinking them. My family is also happy to support, encourage and motivate me to continue in our healthy lifestyle which is priceless for me!
You deserve and owe it to yourself to be the best you for you. Your family, friends and everyone you know will also be happy to support, encourage and motivate you along the way. If you do find some miserable people who give you some resistance or negativity then ignore them and find support elsewhere. You can always join my Facebook group The Korean Couponer to find support and encouragement from a few life coaches, including me, and many positive people!
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