A Week of Chicken Dinners for Two, For Around $30
While most of us are trying to cut costs while maintaining our pampered palate, we have to find ways to get creative and spend wisely. A fairly large organic chicken costs around $10, but by buying a few pre-made items, quality starches and grains, and utilizing the staples in you gourmet foodie pantry, you can turn close to $30 into a week’s worth of relatively simple, fast, delicious meals, that make for extraordinary leftovers (when there are any) the next day.
Mushroom Ravioli with Shredded Chicken in a Brown Butter Balsamic Sauce:
This can be the first dish of the week and the chicken will serve as the base for the following five days. Roast the well-seasoned chicken over large slices of red onions, thyme and garlic butter (or any type of a compound butter you are looking to use up). When the chicken is done, start browning butter in a pan, deglaze it with a nice balsamic vinegar, let that reduce, carve off a breast, shred it and toss it and the caramelized onions with a package of boiled chanterelle ravioli and a sprinkling of parmesan.
Chicken with White Truffle Farro Risotto:
Make a traditional risotto by substituting the whole grain Farro for Arborio, add part of the other breast, and drizzle a quality white truffle oil over the top. The texture of the farro is unbeatable (plus the extra health bene’s) and who isn’t a sucker for white truffle oil? Pure gourmet comfort food.
BBQ Chicken Melt Sandwiches:
Shred the meat of one of the thighs, warm it in your favorite BBQ sauce, pile it onto slices of toasted bread, top with slices of Monterey Jack and broil it in the toaster oven until it’s bubbly and browned. On the other slice of bread spread a mixture of BBQ sauce and mayo and seal the whole messy deal.
Cook organic pinto beans from the bulk section with garlic cloves and bay leaves, and season, then refry in duck fat or bacon drippings before encasing them in a soft tortilla with shredded cheese, chicken, sour cream, and your favorite hot sauce.
Chicken Barley Soup:
Day 5, pick the rest of the meat off of the bird and make an aromatic broth. Dice a carrot and onion and sauté with the remaining meat. Add to the stock in which the barley is nicely plumped and bursting with flavor.