Sunday, January 5, 2014

Breaded Roast Chicken Breast

I needed to make chicken stock so I picked up a couple of breasts from Safeway.  For some reason I can't buy two bone in/skin on chicken breasts at Save On Foods. I tried one day. I asked the woman at the counter if she could repackage 3 breasts from one of the packages of 7. "yes of course." she replied. So she opened a package priced at $12.14 and took 3 breasts out of it.  She packaged up the breasts and put a new price on them. $12.65! 

I'm getting good at boning chicken breasts now, I quickly cut along the breast bone to the narrow tip. Then scrape the meat away from the ribs and finally the shoulder.  Pull the skin off and put it in a small frying pan lightly oiled.  Make the skin crispy for the dogs/cats or maybe a crunchy garnish on the meat. To make stock cut an onion in half and chunk up a carrot and celery stick.  A couple of cloves of garlic (optional) and a bay leaf or two. Add the bones and fill the pot with water.  Bring to a fast boil and start skimming the grey foam that forms. It makes the stock cloudy. When grey foam stops forming turn the heat to a simmer, cover and let it cook for 35 minutes total. Let it cool then strain through a sieve or cheesecloth or whatever. Throw away the soggy vegetables and bones, all their flavour and nutrition is now in the stock.

It's best to salt the breast first but I usually forget and have to put it in the egg dip with pepper, paprika and poultry seasoning. Seasoning can also go in the breading but most of it is left in the bag. Anyway, coat the breast in flour then dip in beaten egg and shake in bag of bread crumbs. Put on a lightly oiled baking sheet and roast in a 350ºF oven for 30 minutes or until juices run clear when pricked with a fork. It's a good idea to press the side of the fork against the meat see what it feels like cooked. Eventually you'll be able to tell when the meat is done simply by pressing on it.

The rice is plain, just salt and olive oil.  The carrots and Brussels sprouts were done in the steamer, run under cold water to stop cooking, then reheated in olive oil and salt. Once the bitterness is cooked off the oil it tastes wonderful. Overheat olive oil and it tastes very bitter again.

I basted the breasts with chicken fat from the skins which browned them nicely.  The remaining fat took a teaspoon of flour and an ounce of chicken stock then half a cup of milk. Whisk smooth and add 1/4 cup shredded cheddar cheese. Melt and serve over the vegetables.

For an easy to prepare meal, this is really good.

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