Roast Chicken Two Ways

Is there anything better than the smell of a chicken roasting in the oven?

Lately, I've been trying to make the most out of each meal that I cook.  (What can I do with the leftovers? How can I get two meals out of this?)  I had a lovely organic, whole chicken and decided to roast it up using a technique from one of my favorite FCI courses: Poulet Rôti Grand-mère (Grandmother's Roast Chicken). I cleaned and trussed the bird, rubbed vegetable oil all over it, and then browned it on the stove in butter before transferring it to a 450 degree oven. After 10 minutes, I added some carrots, red onions and the neck, wings and heart, which I had also browned on the stove with a bit of stock and herbs. The pan went back into the oven to roast for about 45 more minutes, basting it with its juices every so often. I took it out to rest when the internal temperature was between 140-150 degrees and the juices were clear.

While the chicken was roasting, I peeled and diced some red potatoes and sautéed them with some bacon, wild mushrooms, herbs and diced apple. As soon as they were slightly tender, I stirred in a spoonful of chicken stock, a TBS of butter and a bit of salt and pepper and then placed the pan in the oven next to the chicken for the last 20 minutes to continue cooking. About 5 minutes before I took them out, I added in some baby peas for color.

When the chicken was ready, I placed it on a cutting board to rest and tented it with foil. Then, I strained and discarded the vegetables from the pan juices and then returned the yummy drippings back to the pan. I heated to a slight boil, then whisked in a bit of flour and a few splashes of chicken stock until I had a nice gravy.  I added some salt and pepper to taste, but it didn't need much.  I don't usually make gravy, but Chris loves it, and since I didn't make mashed potatoes, it seemed only fair. I'm glad I was awesome.

I gave us each a nice portion of chicken breast drowning in gravy and a big spoonful of the potato mixture. The chicken was juicy, the gravy so tasty--and the roasted potatoes with apples, mushrooms and bacon, terrific.

A lovely, lovely meal.

But, I wasn't done. When we were finished eating, I went back to work.  I shredded the rest of the meat from the chicken and set aside.  I added some chicken stock and light cream to the leftover gravy until I had a lovely base for chicken pot pie.  Once the sauce was ready, I added in the chicken along with some thawed frozen broccoli, peas and carrots. I gently stirred it all together and adjusted the seasonings, then spooned it into four mini pie plates until they were close to overflowing.  I topped each with some pie dough (I always keep some in the fridge) and placed in the warm oven to bake at 375 for about 20 minutes.

I'll heat up the chicken pot pies for dinner later this week.

Yum and yum.