Chef Secrets-Chicken

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Who couldn’t use a little extra help in the kitchen? There are always easier ways to make that special dish more special or save time in the kitchen and thus Chef Secrets was created! This is a new series on my blog to share great tips and tricks of the trade and hopefully you’ll share some of yours as well!

The beginning of the year is usually a time where most people are extremely health conscience, but clean healthy eating does not mean NO FLAVOR. Here are today’s Chef Secrets to creating delicious chicken every time!

  • When choosing poultry, make sure there is no liquid residue either wet or frozen on the bottom of the package. Excess liquid means the meat has been frozen and the cells have released a percentage of the liquid. When cooked the bones will be darker than a fresher bird.
  • Apply pressure to the breastbone of the poultry before buying. If they bone isn’t pliable, the chicken is older and will not be as tender when cooked.
  • Did you know you CAN freeze a chicken IF the chicken has been defrosted in the refrigerator and has not remained the refrigerator more than 2 days.
  • FREE-RANGE chickens are more flavorful than closed cooped chickens. Free-range chickens are ale to move around the yard therefore, developing more flavor. If possible, purchase young free-range chickens for maximum flavor and tenderness.
  • To create a flavorful roasted bird every time, roast your chicken on the SIDE for 15 minutes, basting and alternating sides until the final 15-20 minutes of cooking. Roast the bird on it’s back for the final 20 minutes. Your chicken breast will be moist and flavorful!

What’s the diff? Just some quick notes to help you understand the difference between chickens!

  • Broilers/Fryers: 7 week old birds that weight from 3-4 pounds.
  • Roasting Chickens: Hens weighing between 5-8 pounds and have more fat than broilers
  • Stewing hens: 1-year-old birds weighing 4-8 pounds. Retired laying old hens that need to be slow roasted, but full of flavor.
  • Capons: 10 week old castrated roosters weighing 8-10 pounds.
  • Rock Cornish Game Hens: 4-6 week old chickens weighing 1-2 pounds are a hybrid between Cornish and Rock chickens.
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Noodle Soup with Vegetables and Beef

It’s official…I LOVE soup…I LOVE NOODLES…and I’m COLD! I think I’m driving my daughter bonkers, but it’s quick, filling, healthy, and easy to make. What’s NOT to love? This is my “go to” meal after a weight lifting session to help power me back up, but tonight this is my “go to” warm me up meal (smile). If you’re familiar with Bim Bim Bap, a wonderful Korean dish made with rice, this is a quick version using noodles as the primary starch.

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Ingredients:

1 package of Ramen noodles

2 oz raw flank steak

2 green onions chopped

5 baby bella mushrooms thinly sliced

1/4 cup matchstick carrots

1 half cucumber sliced

1 cup wilted spinach

1 tsp sesame seeds

drizzled sesame oil

Prepare the Ramen noodles according to the package directions. While the noodles are cooking, slice the raw flank steak as thinly as possible and set aside. Slice all of the remaining veggies and place in small piles. Place cooked noodles in the bowl and arrange veggies and steak on top of the noodles.  Pour the hot broth on top of the noodles and veggies, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and drizzle with sesame oil….ENJOY!