Thursday, September 22, 2011

Easiest Chicken You Will Ever Cook!

I am going to change your life today.  Seriously, this post will change your life.  OK, that might not be true, but it will change the way you think about cooking chickens.  Do you think about cooking chickens?  I do.  I mean, not every second of every day, but it does cross my mind.
Do you buy rotisserie chickens from the grocery store?  Everyone does….they are so easy, and so good!  Anytime I need cooked chicken for a recipe, I buy a pre-cooked one.  They always smell so good when I pass their heating contraption thing at the grocery store.  I know some people can make them last for days….we pretty much kill it in a day.
So if you do enjoy a good rotisserie chicken, you will want to try this.  I cook a whole chicken in the slow cooker.  The method I use gives you a moist, perfectly cooked chicken, that is just like a store bought rotisserie chicken.  Why would you do this instead of just buying one you may ask?  It can be cheaper, and you don’t have to leave your house.  If you keep your eyes peeled, grocery stores will have great sales on whole chickens.  When that happens, buy a few and keep them in your freezer.  When you want to cook one, just take it out the day before to defrost…and you will have a great chicken in about 8 hours.  I will show you how I do it.
What you are looking at above, besides the horrible shadow at the bottom, is my slow cooker……lined with balls of foil.  This will serve as a “rack” for your chicken.  It will keep the chicken from sitting on the bottom of the slow cooker and stewing in its own juices.  The heat will circulate all the way around your chicken, and cook it to perfection.

I put a whole chicken, nasty innards removed, on top of the foil balls.  I rubbed the chicken all over with butter, and then I sprinkled it with seasoned salt and pepper.  You could use garlic powder, lemon pepper, Italian seasoning, etc.  Any dry seasoning you want, but no liquid.  You don’t want to add any liquid to the pot.  I stuck to basics.  I set the slow cooker for 8 hours, put its lid on, and walked away.  That’s it.  At the end of the day, I had this:

Its skin won’t get as crispy and dark as a rotisserie chicken, but you shouldn’t be eating the skin anyway.  It’s bad for you;)  Besides that, this chicken tastes just like what you would buy.  You don’t do anything but slap it in the slow cooker in the morning. 
Once you have this beautiful cooked chicken, you can do so many things with it….chicken soup, chicken sandwiches, pulled chicken, chicken tacos, really anything.  I will show you two ideas….
The first is a family favorite around here….quesadillas.  But I fancy them up with Gourmet Rooster Caramelized Onion and Chardonnay Spread.  Let me show you.

On that tortilla is a healthy smear of the onion spread, shredded chicken breast from my perfectly cooked chicken, and fontina cheese.  I threw it in a frying pan and cooked it until browned on both sides.  The onion spread with fontina cheese is pretty much to die for. 
You could use chicken breast, chicken thigh, really any part of the chicken you want.  My drumsticks were immediately confiscated by my kids….thankfully I only have 2 kids so it worked out.

Yummy fancy quesadilla!  I even used a wheat tortilla…..all the flavors on the inside covered up the “wheatiness” of it, and we still got the health benefits;)

I love fontina.
My second idea for the chicken is to throw it in an omelet.  This is a great weeknight meal.  Most people always have eggs in their fridge, and this is a great “use-up” for leftover chicken.

I beat a few eggs with a splash of cream.  You can leave out the cream if you hate things that are good.

Have you ever made an omelet?  They are pretty easy.  I poured the eggs into a well-greased pan.  You move the eggs around gently so that the whole bottom of the pan is covered.  You push the cooked egg towards the center of the pan, and then tilt the pan so the uncooked egg goes to the sides….keeping the perfect circle.
I don’t flip.  I put a lid over the eggs….that will cook the top enough.

I layered on some shredded chicken, more fontina, and Gourmet Rooster Roasted Red Pepper and Garlic Spread. 

I definitely won’t be getting a job as an omelet cook any time soon. Mine might not be as pretty as a restaurant omelet, but it tastes better! 
Have you tried my savory spreads yet?  If you haven’t, you are missing out.  Your life will not be complete until you have tried both.  I’m just sayin’……
I hope you try to cook your chicken in the slow cooker.  You will thank me;)

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