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Poultry Recipes

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Windy Meadows Economical Crock Pot Chicken and Soup

Windy Meadows Pastured Chicken Liver Pate'
Fried Pastured Chicken Livers with Creamy Cilantro Dip
Just try and make me eat liver...
Homemade Bone Broths

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Homemade Bone Broths
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 “The stock pot is the most important piece of kitchen equipment.”

Dr. Francis Pottenger, medical researcher and author

   

What is contained in homemade bone broth?

 

There are many beneficial components in bone broth, beginning with minerals and gelatin.  The minerals in bone broth are in an absorbable form – calcium, magnesium, potassium, and many others.   Gelatin – a hydrophilic (water loving) colloid – attracts digestive juices to itself for rapid and effective digestion.

 Bone broth is used for many intestinal disorders including colitis and Crohns disease. Broth may be the only thing ill children and adults feel like eating, or can keep down, because of the gelatin it contains.  Chicken soup has been called “Jewish penicillin” as it has been shown to prevent or lessen the severity of colds and flu. Gelatin is not a complete protein but helps the body use the other proteins in the diet more efficiently – good for families on a tight budget that precludes purchasing a lot of meat     Components of cartilage and collagen – used to treat arthritis and bone disorders Collagen is found in all tissues of the body, including muscles, blood vessels, cartilage and  bones – necessary for growth and tissue repair

 

 

 What is the secret of bone-broth preparation?

 

The secret of rich, nutritious bone-broth is that the meaty bones are slow-cooked in a crock-pot or heavy-bottomed stockpot with a little apple cider vinegar in enough filtered water to just cover the bones . The broth is kept at a barely a simmer, not a boil, for several hours, as many as 24 for chicken and 36 for lamb and beef. Water is replenished as needed to keep the level at the top of the bones  If the bones used have meat clinging to them, remove the meat from the bones when the meat is just cooked, return bones to the broth, and continue to cook until the smaller bones can be broken or crushed.  At this point strain the broth, add sautéed onions and carrots and other more delicate vegetables and the meat bits.  Season the broth with sea salt and white pepper to taste.  May be served with a lacto-fermented condiment on the side.

 

What is NOT in homemade bone broth?

 

MSG (monosodium glutamate)  – commonly found in commercial soup bases (and MANY other commercially prepared foods) and is used as a flavor enhancer.  In actuality, MSG is a dangerous neurotoxin and should not be consumed in any amount, especially by babies and young children in stages of rapid brain development.  MSG has been associated with obesity in children and adults.

 

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Just try and make me eat liver...
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          It’s a challenge, to be sure. How is it that one of the most treasured foods from earliest times has gotten such a bad rap? Being made the fall guy for high cholesterol problems did not help. Mistaken association with synthetic Vitamin A toxicity didn’t help either. What is the truth about liver?

          What valuable nutrition can be found in liver? It is almost an easier to answer the question, “What nutrition is NOT in liver?” Nearly every vitamin and mineral needed for health can be found in liver, starting with the invaluable Vitamin A. True vitamin A is a catalyst for MANY chemical interactions. Besides being a powerful anti-oxidant, vitamin A is needed for strong bones and good eyesight. It is also necessary for the utilization of all proteins, minerals and water-soluble vitamins in the body

          Vitamin A and beta-carotene are not the same. Beta-carotene can be converted to vitamin A but not efficiently and not by everyone. Young children, the elderly, diabetics and those with thyroid problems are especially at a disadvantage as they may lack the enzymes necessary to do the conversion. Also needed to make the conversion is adequate fat in the diet, so those who have placed themselves on a low-fat diet will not be able to change beta-carotene into vitamin A, either.  
 
          Also confusing are concerns about toxicity of vitamin A, but these concerns should be addressed to the synthetic form of vitamin A, not the natural vitamin A found in real foods such as liver. Dr. Weston Price, in his famous world-wide search for healthy cultures in the early part of the last century, found to his surprise that those who were the most free of disease and deformity consumed, on average, ten times the amount of natural vitamin A as did Americans of his day. One can only imagine what the ratio would be in our day.
 
          Also found in liver is the majority of B vitamins, including the hard to obtain B5 (pantothenic acid), B6 (pyridoxine), B12, (cobalamin), and folic acid. All of the B vitamins are needed for healthy nerves and skin tissues, cardiovascular system and health of the endocrine system. There is no dependable source of B12 from something other than an animal source.  
 
          Vitamin D3 also finds liver as a dependable source. It also wears many hats as it is involved in many chemical reactions in the body. Vitamin D3 even has a protective role against cancer. The body can make Vitamin D3 out of cholesterol in the presence of sunlight, but Dr. Price found that healthy peoples also ate many vitamin D rich foods such as eggs, butter, liver and other organ meats. Liver even contains vitamin K and E, two more valuable fat-soluble vitamins that are involved in varied and wonderful tasks in the body.  
 
          If you have a hard time introducing liver to children and spouses, either breaded and fried or as liver pate’, try grating frozen liver and herbs into rice before cooking, or into spaghetti sauces with other ground meat, simmered gently before serving. Most recipes that call for liver benefit from the soaking of the liver in milk for an hour or so before cooking, to give it a milder, more pleasant flavor. The benefits far outweigh your hesitancy to give liver a try.  
 
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Windy Meadows Economical Crock Pot Chicken and Soup
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Let’s face it—you can’t go out to eat every night!  And some of us that wouldn’t anyway know that the best eating comes from the best ingredients cooked at home.  This is a very economical recipe that will give a small family two, if not three, meals from a single chicken. Large families can pretend a roaster oven is a crockpot and place several chickens in the roaster oven, except the cooking times will be MUCH shorter, possibly only two to three hours depending on the cooking temperature and the number of chickens. (If you are considering using a roaster oven, a total of 12 pounds of chicken will fit inside an 18 quart roaster oven: two six-pounders, three four-pounders, or four three-pounders.) 

This recipe may help answer questions we are often asked, such as, “How do you manage to feed such a large family on a small income?” and, “How do you DO it?”  Part of the “secret” is that we try not to waste anything.

 

Meal #1

 

1.        Choose a frozen 4 or 5-pound pastured chicken.  Place in an ungreased oval six-quart oval crockpot.

 

2.        Coat the exterior of the chicken with olive oil and sprinkle generously with sea salt, which has a much fuller flavor than regular salt. DO NOT add any water.  Our Windy Meadows Pastured Chicken does not need anything but sea salt to allow the natural flavors to come through (poultry seasoning is a frail attempt to replace the flavor lost when chickens are raised by modern production methods).  You could slip a quarter of an onion and a few leafy ends of celery into the cavity of the chicken. If you want a more sophisticated flavor, place a few slices of a garlic clove and a sprinkling of fresh or dried rosemary on the chicken.

 

3.        Turn on the crockpot to the low setting and go about your business for the day (or if you are a real go-getter start the crockpot the night before).  The chicken will cook slowly while you are working hard doing something else.  Cook seven to eight hours for a large chicken. (If you only want the chicken to take only half a day, put a fresh chicken on the high setting for three or so hours).

 

4.        Remove the lid, carefully remove the chicken breasts (saving the chicken skin) and use them to fix the first meal using your favorite recipe. (Mmm…chicken salad sounds good…).

 

Meal #2

 

1.        Use a slotted spoon to remove the remaining chicken from the crockpot to cool.  Bone out the meat, watching especially for the thin, needle-like bone in each drumstick.   Strain the pot juices into a heatproof jar (a wide-mouth canning jar works great for this) and when cool enough, place the jar in the refrigerator.  Also set the chicken skin aside to be made into “bacon bits” (recipe follows).  All that is left should be a well-scavenged skeleton of a chicken.  Save for Recipe #3.

 

2.        Decide “Where in the world” you would like to eat tonight.  The meat you removed from the bones can be used in recipes limited only by your imagination.  Here are some ideas:

 

·Mexican—Chicken enchiladas with jack cheese, green chilies and sour cream

·French—Chicken and mushroom crepes

·Country French—Chicken a-la-king over split hot buttered biscuits

·Indian—Chicken curry over steamed brown rice

·Italian—Add chicken to spaghetti sauce; serve over spaghetti with Parmesan cheese

·Chinese—Almond chicken with fried rice

·Jewish—Chicken soup with matzo balls

·German—Chicken stroganoff over linguini

·American—Chicken spaghetti (cook noodles in chicken broth)

·Southwest—Warm chicken in salsa, serve on tortillas with shredded lettuce and sour cream

·Western—Warm diced chicken in barbecue sauce and serve over split rolls

·Ranch—Chop or shred the chicken and add to your basic salad greens with shredded cheese, wedges of boiled eggs, diced avocado, halved cherry tomatoes, etc.  Serve with a salad dressing made with buttermilk (or thinned sour cream) and mayonnaise seasoned with garlic powder, dill weed and sea salt to taste.  Our family’s favorite basic salad is torn green leaf lettuce (and other mixed greens when they are available), finely grated carrot, finely slivered purple cabbage and thinly sliced celery.

 

Meal #3

 

Basic Chicken Bone Broth—Place all the bones from the chicken back into the crockpot with just enough water so as to barely cover the bones.  Put a tablespoon of vinegar in the water, along with leafy celery tops and onion slices if you like. Turn the crockpot on the low setting and cook  24 hours. Keep an eye on the pot and add more water as necessary to keep the bones covered. This low, slow cooking with the little bit of vinegar allows the most nutritious components from the bones (calcium and other minerals) and cartilage (collagen) to leach into the cooking liquid. After about 24 hours you should be able to crush the bones between your fingers and will notice that the cartilage is entirely missing from the bones. Strain out the bones and give them to your pet (they are very soft and the can not choke on them) and use the broth as the base of a hearty, nutritious soup or for the liquid to cook rice.

 

Ideas for the remaining chicken bits:  

 

1.     Chicken fat for cooking—The creamy yellow fat that came to the top of the jar in your refrigerator (from step #1) is very flavorful, especially since it came from a pastured chicken.  You can use the fat to sauté onions for other dishes instead of vegetable oil.  The unique flavors of meats come from their fats.

 

2.        “Bacon Bits”—Chop the skin that came off the cooked chicken into samll squares..  These can be slowly sautéed in a small skillet on medium or medium low heat without additional fat until they are crispy and brown (the use of a splatter screen is strongly recommended!!).  Stir them around and turn them over occasionally to get them evenly colored.  Carefully remove them from the pan onto paper towels and lightly salt with sea salt.  Break into evenly sized pieces. These make wonderful “bacon bits” for topping salads or baked potatoes.

 

3.        Concentrated crockpot juices—The jelled liquid in the refrigerated jar can be used in several ways:

·Dilute and use in place of water in sauces or gravies.

·Dilute and use to cook spaghetti noodles

·Add to the soup stock for a more flavorful broth.

·Freeze undiluted in ice cube trays and transfer to a labeled zip-lock bag for later use.  You can drop these broth cubes into sauces and gravies while they’re still frozen. 

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Windy Meadows Pastured Chicken Liver Pate'
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Adapted from Sally Fallon's recipe in Nourishing Traditions

This was the most-requested recipe at the Seminar on Healthy Traditional Diets hosted by the Dallas-Fort Worth Chapter of the Weston A. Price Foundation, held at Storybook Ranch in McKinney in February of 2006, with Sally Fallon as the featured speaker.

 

4 tbsp. butter, or more as needed

1 lb (about 12) pastured chicken livers, with strings removed

1/2 lb. mushrooms, washed, dried and coarsely chopped

1/2 lb. onions, peeled and coarsely chopped

2/3 c. white cooking wine

2 cloves garlic, mashed

1/2 tsp. dry mustard

1/2 tsp. dried dill

1/2 tsp. dried rosemary, crushed to a powder

1 tbsp. lemon juice

Sea salt to taste

Cayenne to taste

8 oz. cream cheese, softened

 

Melt butter in heavy skillet and add livers, onions and mushrooms.  Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes or until livers are browned and mushrooms are softened.  Add cooking wine, garlic, mustard, lemon juice and herbs.  Simmer until the liquid is mostly gone.  Cool slightly.  Process all of the ingredients in a food processor in several batches with the softened cream cheese until smooth.  Season to taste.  Place in a lined mold, chill, remove to a serving plate, smooth surface with an offset spatula, and decorate.  Serve with red pepper wedges and other vegetable dippers, properly prepared grain crackers, home made tortilla chips, etc.

 

Note: This recipe was adapted from Sally Fallon's Chicken Liver Pate’ recipe in Nourishing Traditions. I have only intensified the seasonings that Sally used in her recipe for Southern tastes, then added cayenne and the cream cheese. The cream cheese mellows the flavor of the chicken liver to the point that those who formerly could not look at liver will actually enjoy it.  We have had numerous people tell us that they hated liver before they tasted this recipe. This pate' is a little lighter in color and softer in texture than that of traditional pate'.  I usually decorate the pate' with cut-outs from whole pimentos to imitate flower petals, or a "rose" made from a tomato paring to give it even more eye appeal.  Enjoy! 

Connie Hale

Windy Meadows Family Farm

 

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Windy Meadows Fried Pastured Chicken Livers with Creamy Cilantro Dip
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 For Chicken Livers:

Defrost, trim white fibers and place in medium bowl:

1 lb. pastured chicken livers

Optional Step: Pour over livers and soak for about one or two hours, then drain:

Milk to cover livers

Pat dry and cut each chicken liver into several pieces.  Dust with:

½ c. unseasoned, organic unbleached white flour

Separate pieces and allow to rest at room temperature while the remaining preparations are made

Combine in bowl and set aside:

1 c. organic unbleached flour

2 tsp. fine sea salt

1 tsp. paprika

½ tsp. garlic powder

¼ tsp. white pepper, or to taste

½ tsp. baking powder

Separate whites from yolks and whip with fork or wire whisk until frothy, then set aside:

3 to 4 egg whites  (save egg yolks for ice cream or custard!)

As fat is heating, pour beaten egg whites over dusted chicken livers, tossing to coat. Toss a handful of liver pieces at a time into the seasoned flour, coating all sides of each piece with the flour mixture, shaking of excess and setting on a platter until all liver pieces are done.

Heat in medium saucepan at medium to medium-high heat until a tiny piece of batter sizzles rapidly:

2 c. of palm oil shortening

Ease about a third to a half of the battered pieces into the hot oil without crowding, then cover with a spatter screen.  Fry livers about 5 minutes, or until golden brown, turning once while frying with tongs. Remove the livers from the hot oil with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels or kitchen cloths. Repeat with remainder of livers.  Serve warm or at room temperature with Creamy Cilantro Dip, if desired.

 

For Creamy Cilantro Dip:

In a small saucepan ½ full of water bring to boil until tomatillos change color from bright to dull green:

2 small tomatillos (green husk tomatoes), peeled of paper husk, but whole

One small serrano pepper, stem removed, but whole

Drain and place vegetables in blender and set aside.

In same small sauce pan, sauté until onions wilt:

½ white onion, sliced

2 cloves garlic, sliced

Pour contents of pan into blender.

Add to blender and process until smooth, scraping down as needed:

8 oz. cultured cream cheese or plain cream cheese, broken into chunks

1 ½ tsp. sea salt, or to taste

1/2 tsp. cumin

1 bunch cilantro, coarsely chopped

Juice of one lime

White pepper to taste

Optional step: Add by hand gently to desired thickness (thinner for dressing):

¼ to ½ c. cultured cream

 

Chill and serve with Fried Chicken Livers, or crudités (sliced fresh vegetables such as celery, tomato wedges, carrot ovals), lightly steamed broccoli and cauliflower florets, breakfast eggs, as toppings for nachos, etc. etc.  Makes about 1 1/2 cups.

 

 

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Disclaimer
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 The information on this web site is not intended to replace the advice of your health care provider, but to share thoughts and ideas gathered over several years of personal research.  Use them as food for your own thoughts and discuss their relevance with those on whom you call for medical advice.

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