How many of you moms out there are just like me and are starting to get frustrated that you can never remember to take out the chicken in time to thaw for dinner and end up just not cooking anymore? Ok, well that's me. My husband works and I work, so I have a limited time frame when it comes to making dinner. If that meat isn't thawed, I pretty much have to scrap my meal plans and come up with a Plan B. And yes, that has been our life for the last few months, and I've gotten frustrated.
I was on Pinterest the other day just browsing, and I saw the one pin where, you know, the mom makes a whole month's worth of meals or crock pot meals all in one day and stocks them up in her freezer. I'm sorry, but who has that much space in their freezer?? Unfortunately, I just skip over those and don't even bother to check for any good recipes. This time, I actually did open up the link and was really glad I did. I found the idea of cooking all my chicken for the week ahead of time!!
This might not seem huge to you, but it was to me.
Now, I am kind of sort of a snob when it comes to cooking chicken. Ever since I found better (and yummier and juicier) ways of cooking chicken breast, I've kind of stopped poaching/boiling my chicken. It seems so bland and flavorless, no matter how many onions and celery pieces you put in there. But at this point, being as exhausted and sick as I am, I have decided to let go of my pride and just BOIL THE HECK out of the chicken if it meant having fresh chicken already cooked and not from a can. Again.
So basically I went to the store today and I bought a 3lb bag of frozen breasts for $6.98 (at the lovely Walmart) and when I got home, I threw it in the stock pot with a few other pieces of frozen chicken breast filets I had in the freezer, roughly chopped half an onion that I had in my freezer, threw in some bullion cubes and some bay leaves, and let that sucker boil for about 30 min whilst I, tired mama, took a nap.
When the chicken was done and cooked, I drained the broth (which I totally wanted to keep and totally forgot!!) and gave those chicken pieces a good chopping and sorted them out into bags. I did 2 cups per bag of chopped chicken because that's about 2 breasts, ish. I was able to get 6 cups out of my 3.5-4lbs of frozen chicken.
I was kind of disappointed though to see that it only made 3 bags, which meant really 3 meals. However, cooked chicken is cooked chicken and I am really still pleased with the results and sooo looking forward to having chicken/cooked meals again. I still put the bags in the freezer, but at least now I can just stick them in the microwave for a quick warm up, or just throw it frozen in the casserole and let it warm in the oven.
Next time, I'll actually do some math and put forth a little more money for some more chicken. Now that I see how easy it is, I really am not daunted to try this again another time. If I'm especially feeling up to it, I may even brown some hamburger and sort those out, although I really don't mind thawing hamburger in the microwave as much because it doesn't get those tough/rubbery edges that chicken does and it's looser (since its ground) and thaws more evenly.
So I feel really good about this and slowly but surely, and definitely not all at once, will I try to be better each week about prepping my food for the week so that when I'm in the hustle and bustle of things, I don't feel so stressed and frustrated.
If you have any ideas or try this out, let me know how it goes! Happy Cooking!