Chicken Henri: A lot of mileage from one bird

  • Rotisserie chickens at their height of lusciousness at Atkins Market in Amherst. NINA SCOTT

For the Gazette
Published: 9/3/2021 11:13:11 AM

One day before Henri threatened this area my husband, Jim, and dog, Sophie, were coming home from two days of visiting a dear friend in the Poconos.

No one really knew if we would be facing power outages, and if so, opening the refrigerator or the freezer was not recommended. What could I fix if I can’t cook?

After I cudgeled my brain, I decided to get a rotisserie chicken at Atkins Market, just up the road from us. It was getting late in the afternoon and at first I thought that there were none left on the shelf (a lot of other people probably had the same idea), but there, o miracle, I found a last bird.

We had it warm the first night (the skin is always so good!) and then, as the power did not go off, I got creative with the leftovers. There are only two of us (OK, two and a quarter, counting Sophie, who is a small dog).

I picked over the carcass the next day, reserving the meat and putting bones and skin into a pot with chopped celery, onion, a clove of garlic, one bay leaf and some parsley, adding water to cover and letting it stew slowly. After about an hour and a half I drained the solids through a sieve and reserved the stock.

We had some of the cold chicken on sandwiches, after which I got another meal out of the rest of the chicken, chopped, and a sauce made with sautéed mushrooms and the beautiful stock, adding some dry Spanish sherry, half and half, and chopped parsley. I served it with bulghur wheat, although rice or noodles or even patty shells would be just fine as well.

The bones were picked over for dog food for Sophie. She gave it five stars.

The only things not consumed were the bones themselves.

A lot of mileage from one bird!

Should you need it, here is the recipe for the sauce:

Ingredients

2 T butter, melted

2 T all-purpose flour

2 c. hot chicken stock

Sautéed sliced mushrooms

1 T lemon juice

2 T dry Spanish sherry (optional, but good)

2 T half and half or cream, should you want it richer

Directions

Melt butter in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Sprinkle with flour, then whisk for a few moments to let the roux cook. Add stock and stir until thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper, lemon juice and sherry, and if you want to be totally decadent, pour in a splash of half and half or cream.




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