So you’ve got leftover rotisserie chicken, eh?

I used to love buying those pre-made rotisserie chickens at QFC, especially at the end of the day cause they were like $5 and would feed me for a week with these TRICKS!

Usually I’ll eat a good portion of the chicken while it’s still warm and crispy. Maybe folded up in a baguette or with some mashed red potatoes and gravy. MMM! But then I’ve got half a fuckin’ chicken carcass sitting in my fridge making everything else smell like KFC and my creative culinary mind is the only thing that can get it out of there.

I have a few different methods I have employed, depending on what I’m in the mood for. Yesterday, Aurora told me the rest of her herb-roasted chicken was up for grabs and I decided to make some easy chicken vegetable soup with it. This shit is SO GOOD FOR HANGOVERS, I know because I just ate some and I have one. I feel better now, AND YOU WILL TOO ONCE YOU MAKE THIS GOD DAMN SOUP OK.

It’s super easy. You can pretty much just use basic shit you  have laying around in your fridge and cupboard too. Here’s what I used.

2 tbs olive oil

a diced carrot

1/2 cup onion

6 chopped mushrooms

half a diced sweet potato

1 cup diced cauliflower

really wish I had had celery cause then I would have used that too

some spinach

and I almost put in some zucchini but someone already had dibs on it

Saute the diced onion and carrot (and celery if you have it) in the olive oil until the onion turns a bit clear and smells REAL GOOD. Then you can throw your chicken in there and a bunch of water (you can really add as much water as the amount of soup you want to eat, this stock can go a long way.) I like to boil the chicken and then let it baste on medium low for about 20min or so. This will make the chicken all warm and soft again and you can pull it out, let it cool off, and start picking little pieces of the meat off and throwing them back in the soup.

You always want to plan when to add your veggies to soup so that they don’t get overcooked. Mushrooms are great to add whenever cause their texture doesn’t really change and they just soak up all the deliciousness of whatever they’re in more and more as they sit there. But things like the sweet potato, cauliflower, zucchini and spinach will get a bit soggy and gross if you’re boiling them up with everything else. If your soup is really hot when everything else is done cooking, just throwing the veggies diced up relatively small at the end should cook them without any additional heat.

Some other shit you can add to this to give it personality are: alphabet noodles, kidney beans, garbanzo beans, tomato, corn, peas, greens, sprinkle on some fresh-baked croutons (goodbye stale bread hello delicious multi-purposed topper) and, BTW, grated cheese and a bit of pepper never hurt anybody.

This stuff is so easy to heat up in a saucepan and eat with a piece of chewy toast or some tortilla chips or just on its own. Like I said, it is a bit of a miracle cure for a hangover and probably the reason why I haven’t puked on anybody today. It soothes the tummy and makes you feel all hearty, warm and full. It smells like what I bet heaven smells like. Mmm.

My First Food Blog! Bloody Marys & Canned Vegetables for Garnish!

Something I’ve been doing lately is pickling vegetables. My focus has been mainly vegetables that can be used as garnishes for my spicy bloody marys. My first batch was a bunch of organic asparagus spears and green beans from the local Mexican market. I made a simple brine of white vinegar, salt, sugar and water and added my own bulk spices. For the green beans I added brown and yellow mustard seeds, a cinnamon stick, peppercorns, serrano pepper and a bit of cilantro. These are SOOOO good! Crispy, light, spicy, a great snack you can just pull straight from the fridge when you get home.

 They’re super easy to make too. We used a Youtube video as a guide to our pickling.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=10XdOcVwizM

Let me make it clear that this is not “pickling” in the true sense of controlled fermentation, etc, this is simply brining vegetables in an acidic solution, in this case, vinegar. I also love making spicy carrot sticks because it’s a good way to get your vitamin A and they’re super crunchy and delicious to just pull out and chomp on when you need a snack. I keep tweaking my brine every time I make them but they’re great to pickle with jalapeno slices, cilantro and onion. If you cut them into jar-length sticks they’re easy to pluck out and bite into. To make your own bloody marys all you really need is some V-8 or tomato juice, ground pepper, worcestershire sauce, tobasco, salt and lemon to taste. They’re a great way to get in your vegetable servings for the day and they’re great with or without vodka. If you pop in an asparagus, green bean and carrot stick you have a nice refreshing beverage-salad that is surprisingly filling. I LOVE BLOODY MARYS. Yum.