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Cluck! Cluck! My Favorite Way to Prepare Chicken

Cluck! Cluck! My Favorite Way to Prepare Chicken

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Sometimes I feel as if I am about to turn into a chicken. Do I see nodding heads out there? Plain, dry chicken can get boring and downright unpalatable after a while. I have found a solution that is easy and versatile!

Every weekend I do a big cook for the week, and that includes preparing chicken in bulk for fast and easy meals. I used to grill the chicken. One advantage is that you can fit a lot of those little chickie breasts on the grill at one time. However, my skills on the grill are not great and often my chicken ends of overcooked or charred on the outside and underdone on the inside. Nothing worse than tough or crunchy chicken.

I then tried baking the chicken. This is pretty easy to do, but I found that the baked chicken sometimes comes out a little wet and rubbery, which creeps me out really.

In the last year I have stumbled across the perfect cooking method – not too dry, not too slimy, but just right. I now poach the chicken. This is also a fast, easy way to prep chicken with minimal clean up. I find that the chicken comes out juicy and moist each time and shreds up really well. I like the texture and versatility of poached, shredded chicken, much better than sliced or diced. It absorbs any added sauces or seasonings really well and works well in salad, stirfry, tacos or wraps.

Here is a basic poached chicken recipe that I use, which is from Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food magazine:

Basic Poached Chicken I

½ medium yellow onion, halved
1 medium carrot, cut into thirds
1 celery stalk, cut into thirds
2 garlic cloves, peeled and halved
½ lemon, sliced
1 tsp black peppercorns
A few sprigs of thyme or parsley
4-6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts

Directions: Combine all ingredients, except chicken, in a large pot and cover with water by ½ inch. Bring to a boil over high heat. Add chicken and return to a boil. Cook 3 minutes, then cover the pot and remove from heat. Let stand until chicken is cooked through, about 15-18 minutes, flipping halfway through. Remove chicken from poaching liquid immediately. Let cool for a bit and then shred. Can be stored in the refrigerator for 4 days or frozen for future use.

I recently found an even simpler poaching recipe in Jillians Michaels’ The Master Your Metabolism Cookbook:

Basic Poached Chicken II

Put 4-6 chicken breasts in a large pot, cover with water by about 1 ½ inches. Add lemon zest and a bay leave. Bring water to a simmer, then reduce heat to the lowest setting, partially cover, and cook until the meat is cooked through (about 10 minutes). Remove from liquid, let cool, and shred.

Here are some ways I used my shredded chicken this week:

With 1 TB of Wegman’s Mango Coconut sauce and chopped celery over steamed snow peas.

Added to cabbage stirfry. (I use packaged cabbage slaw for a really fast meal.)

I am also going to make some tacos this week with a corn tortilla, roasted chipotle salsa, a bit of feta, and shredded lettuce.

Lunch or dinner in a flash! I would love to hear your shredded chicken recipes! Please feel free to add them to the comments.

Bon appetite!

Author: Elaine Morales
elaine@notjustadaydream.com

Member Comments

i often thought to do that ...now I have the motivation ie: your recipe :)
--funinthesun747

I'm going to try this tonight! I'm trying to find some new ideas...i'm getting so bored with my diet.
--jtygart

I agree that poaching the chicken is the way to go. It remains juicy and tender and does not dry out. Next time I will add the seasonings you suggested
--missymoyo

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