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This post didn’t get finished or published when I planned…was a bit rattled about the upcoming lip surgery, so this has turned into “A Trilogy:  Part l”.

Veggies and a Realization

My post the other day about making a wonderful sounding dish never happened. So, slowly I am “getting the hang of it” with crock pot cooking. Slowly…being the operative word. Let me explain:

For the record, a five pound whole chicken is just too big for a 4 quart crock pot. It reminded me of the first time I used my cooker for Thanksgiving about four years ago on a full turkey breast. Huge fail.

As a result I tested my bird’s size in the pot before unwrapping it and surmised that if I went that route I’d have another epic failure (and doesn’t even take into account my plans to add wads of crumpled foil to keep the chicken out of its own fat while it cooks).

Instead, I whipped out my handy-dandy poultry shears and cut up the fowl, saving the back bone, wing tips and so on for stock.

Photo Source.

Photo Source. FYI-didn’t pay $39.99 for mine. Only $9.99 at Marshall’s. It’s the exact same product!

I opted to make my old stand-by Chicken and Dumplings in my Dutch oven. Well, I was going to link the post with my recipe for C and D but darned if I can find it, so I’m re-posting it in a future post.

This is a good how-to video on just what I did with my cluck-cluck. For some reason I can’t get it to show up on this post, so just click the link. It’s quite good.

All in all it was an excellent decision…lol 🙂  It’s a recipe that doesn’t take long. Whenever I make it though, I always feel the need to let it stew for two to three hours till it’s falling off the bone, which really isn’t necessary. This time, I fished the chicken pieces out after about an hour. Let them cool on a plate till I could handle them, then stripped the meat off and threw it back into the pot. A few wayward pieces may have found their way into my tum-tum, but I’m not telling.

I then started another pot with the back bone, wing tips and just stripped bones for stock. Tossed in all the usual veggies and spices, getting rid of half a bag of baby carrots languishing in the veggie drawer in the process.

All and all, it turned out quite well on both fronts. Dinner was nummy and the stock is waiting in the freezer to become soup this week. Since the surgery on my lip is scheduled for tomorrow, I figure I may really welcome a bit of homemade soup in the coming week. So I’m going out today to hit Trader Joe’s and Von’s for an assortment of easy to eat and prepare foods. While at TJ’s, I’ll pick up a bag of kale for Danish kale soup.

As you may know, my eating habits over the last two years have changed. Almost no red meat. Maybe some pork once in a while. The only meat I really eat is chicken (well, turkey too) and fish. Those get eaten about four to five times a week. Still haven’t figured tofu out and not really all that anxious to.

On days when there’s no meat, I have a handful of edamame for lunch. Here’s the link for nutritional info. I like the ones that Trader Joe’s has frozen in their pods. When I get home I divide them up into snack bags while frozen and pop them back in the freezer. I figure I’ll eat less, if I have to free them from their pods.

You know, it’s funny when you experience something like this…after you’ve slowly changed what you eat over a period of time, foods you used to be just fine with, particularly processed types, taste…well, bad. Some, really bad.

This all came about after I opened a can of Campbell’s Chunky Creamy Chicken and Dumpling soup this weekend.SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES Haven’t had a Chunky brand soup in at least two years. Last week when shopping for food that would be easy, after surgery, I picked up a can of Chunky along with eight cans of Campbell’s “Iconic” Chicken Noodle soup. The latter is my “go-to” sickie soup. It’s what my Mom always made for us when we were under the weather. So, for me, it’s like a big hug. Always have it on hand.

The Chunky soup tasted like chicken soup made with uncooked flour. Quite unpleasant. Then there was the taste and texture of the dumplings. Rather gritty and quite solid. An uncooked flour ball if you will. As for chicken and veggies, few and far between. Down the drain it went. I sent an email to the company expressing my disappointment. Probably won’t have any impact but at least it made me feel better.

This has happened several times in the last year when I go back to a product I used to consume. Total disappointment. At this point, eating something processed leaves a lot to be desired. Guess you could say I’m now “sort of” drifting in the direction of vegetarian-ish eating, with the exception of a bit of chicken and occasional piece of fish. At the very least it’s cleaner eating. Who knows what will happen from here?

Anyhow, I’m all set soup-wise, so wish me luck tomorrow!