I went to Tesco this week-end and bought 3 chickens for £10. Below is what I suggest you could do with them.
First, remove the breasts. View my post Stretch your chicken to see what to do with the breasts. Remove the breasts with a sharp knive, leaving some flesh on the bone so that white-meat lovers don’t feel hard done by. Cut out any excess fat around the rear opening and quickly hook out with your index finger the red bits stuck between the small bones in the inside of the carcass. Also cut off the small tail (this is mostly made of fat so we don’t need it).
Place the chickens in a large oven tray (lined with aluminium foil), breast-side down (to prevent drying while cooking). Drizzle some olive oil over the carcasses and rub it on the skin with your fingers.
Crush one or two whole garlic cloves per chicken, with a chef knife. Tip: Use small cloves as you want to keep your larger cloves in other recipes when you need to peel the cloves (it’s more efficient that way).
You could use a small sprig of rosemary and a small bunch of parsley instead.
Cover the chickens loosely with foil and place in a preheated oven (180 degrees C) for about 45 minutes.
Count about 1/2 onion and 1 carrot per person. Add 2-3 whole crushed garlic cloves, drizzle some olive oil, 1-2tb soya sauce, 1/2 tb Worcester sauce, 1tb Maple syrup, 1/8 dried (thinly cut up) or powdered chicken stock. Tip: mix all the seasoning ingredients together in a bowl before drizzling on the vegetables. If you have other root vegetables such as swede or turnip, use them. There is no right or wrong in this recipe, just use what you have.
If you don’t have Maple syrup, use clear honey which you will have warmed up slightly to make it more runny. If you don’t have honey, a small teaspoon of white sugar will do too. Mix the vegetables with a couple of spoons to spread the oil mixture evenly.
After 45 minutes, remove the aluminium foil (and keep for later use) and spread the vegetables all around the chickens if space allows it. Otherwise, use another oven dish and cook the remaining vegetables separately on another shelf in the oven.
Re-use your piece of foil and wrap over the chickens. Leave to rest for about 30 minutes while you bake your Yorkshire puddings.
Remember after diner to remove the meat from the bones. The meat will be kept in the fridge or freezer. The bones will be used to make chicken stock.
From these three chickens, I got 6 breasts – making 2 dinners for 4 people, 1 roast meal for 4, chicken meat for packed lunches (used in sandwiches, tortilla wraps or salads) or other evening meals using cooked meat and turn the bones into chicken soup or chicken stock.