Help with leftovers

I baked a roasting chicken the other night. When it came out of the oven it looked beautiful. Then I tried to carve it. It was really hard to carve. I had a hard time getting the knife through the skin, and it involved some serious hacking to get the leg joints seperated, even though it was fully cooked. The skin which looked beautiful and crispy and brown was rubbery. It made wonderful gravy, and the meat was pretty tasty, but kind of fought back more than I am used to in chickens. So I have no idea what I did wrong, I have never had this happen before, and I have no idea what I did wrong. All I did was cook it at 350 for um I sort of forget how long, but I basted it a couple times. So if anyone has any thoughts I would appreciate it.

The real problem is that our budget is tight around here, and I really cant throw out something over half a chicken. Has anyone got any ideas on how to make this thing edible. I have about a cup and a half of chicken gravy i made with it if that helps. I suppose I could make soup, but I am looking for other options.

Use a blender to mince it.
Mix it with chopped potatos & rive, with a little minced onion, a few minced carrots.
Cook on stovetop in a big old cast iron frying pan until done.
It’s called hash.

Boil it some more, and call it soup.
Spend the time, chop it into tiny bits, and turn it into chicken salad.
Or, my favorite for leftover chicken, cut it down into pieces roughly 1 inch by 1/2 inch, mix it with spaghetti sauce, cook it awhile, and serve it with pasta. Yummy!

Oh gosh, there’s tons of things you can do with leftover chicken.

Burrito/Taco filling

Remove all the meat from the bones. Saute up some onions and garlic in a saucepan. Add the leftover meat and one of the following:

  • A bunch of salsa
  • A jar of taco sauce
  • A can or two of Herdez Salsa Ranchera (VERY hot, use at your own risk)

Put in enough of those to generously coat the chicken, but don’t make it soupy.

Cook covered on low until chicken is nice and stringy tender, and the sauce has become one with the chicken.

Put in taco or burrito shells. Top with whatever you want - cheese, salsa, tomatos, onions, etc.

Chicken Salad Sandwiches

Remove chicken meat from bones. Mix with mayo, onions, celery, any other herbs or spices you like. Put on bread with onions and lettuce. Yum.

Cold Chicken Salad

Make a salad with whatever you like. Top with slices of cooked chicken.

Other ideas that I don’t have time to list out but you can easily search for on the Web:

Chicken Pot Pie
Chicken Noodle Soup
Chicken A la King
Chicken and Dumplings

easiest re-use scenario: slice meat off carcass. layer in microwave-safe container. pour gravy on top. heat. eat.

if you’ve got a good-sized amount of meat left, you might consider chicken divan. here’s a fairly easy recipe. since the cooked chicken is diced up, that should take care of you’re “resistance” difficulties.

You can make unauthentic, but really yummy quesadillas with it.

Simmer the chicken in some cans of Ro-Tel tex-mex (it’s with the tomato stuff in the grocery store)

Layer tortillas with your favorite Mexican food cheese medley.

Throw on some of the seasoned chicken.

Pop in oven until cheese is melted.

You have plenty of suggestions for leftovers so here’s something to try next time you roast a chicken.

Take a citrus fruit, orange, lemon even grapefuit will work. Quarter it and stuff it in the cavity of the chicken. If there’s room toss in a quarter or two of onion and maybe a couple cloves of garlic.

Then mix some butter with some herbs (whatever you like, just a couple though - don’t overdo it) and maybe a little mashed garlic (make it a paste so it’s not lumpy) and spread it over the chicken, try to work some up under the skin in several places. Then bake for the appropriate time for the size of chicken.

Sorry, I always have to look up times and temperatures everytime I cook so I don’t know these off the top of my head. I usually put a foil tent over the chicken for part of the cooking time so it doesn’t get too crispy. I may or may not baste it once if I have any of the butter mix left, otherwise I leave it be.

This yields an extremely moist chicken. I am talking melt in your mouth moist, with just a hint of flavor from the citrus fruit, but it is not overpowering. It’s also a recipe you can play with a lot, try different citrus or different herbs and see what you like but every variation usually turns out well, at least for me and everyone else I know who’s tried it.