My mom is the assistant pastor of a church with a food closet, and an avid Food Bank volunteer. Our local Food Bank warehouse does not distribute food to local church food closets if it is less than one month before its expiration date. Once while cleaning a walk-in closet at the warehouse, Mom found some frozen chicken that was expired by Food Bank standards (frozen for more than 3 months), but perfectly edible for us volunteer clergypersons with unsophisticated palates. So we distributed it unofficially to church friends and neighbors who are facing financial crises. Since my hubby was facing a layoff at the time, we took one package (about 3 pounds) for ourselves. Since then, we've all joined Weight Watchers, and we've been distributing little spice packets to our friends and food closet clients, with this recipe for crockpot chicken which adds no Points Plus above the value for the chicken itself. So here it is:
Recipe starts here********************
Get some chicken, and remove skin and de-bone it. Quantity can vary, but should fill a crockpot at least halfway. For a full size crockpot, add these spices (or cut quantities in half for a mini-crock, which holds about 2 pounds of deboned chicken pieces):
3 servings of fat-free low-sodium bouillon powder,
one tablespoon of parsley
one tablespoon of onion powder
1/2 tablespoon or celery powder OR 1 teaspoon of ground celery seeds.
You'll also need the following items for the next step of the recipe:
fresh chopped tomatoes, onions, peppers or other no-PP veggies
red wine vinegar (to taste)
Instructions: Put chicken and spice in crockpot. Add water to cover plus an inch or so; cook on high (or in a pan on stove on low to medium) for 3 hours, or in a crockpot set on low all day.
Don't eat it the first day! Remove the chicken from the crockpot, put broth separately in the refrigerator overnight. (We'll use it in the next paragraph.) Chop the chicken and weigh it to determine the Points Plus value, then mix with chopped tomatoes, onions, and green peppers in red wine vinegar to taste. Marinate overnight or longer, then eat as a sandwich or over fresh green salad with no added points beyond the proportion of chicken to the total salad. (For instance, if you cooked 12 PP of chicken by cooked weight, then each 1/4 of the salad is 4 PP).
Now refrigerate the leftover broth overnight. Skim the congealed fat, then reheat and strain to remove any excess chicken parts. Add more seasonings such as a bouquet garni if you wish. This makes a great chicken stock. My WW leader says that if you remove all the fat very carefully (we reheat it twice and skim the fat both times before freezing the broth for later), this is 0 PP per cup. We use it for vegetable soup and to cook veggies in a wok. Also usable to flavor mashed potatoes instead of butter or margarine or in a chicken crock pot "roast" with your choice of additions such as potatoes.
Recipe ends here************************
Between all of us Weight Watchers ladies and gentlemen at our two churches and my nursing home chaplaincy, we've lost an average of 5 pounds in the first month. Our outliers who really follow Points Plus strictly have lost up to 10 pounds in the first month. Nursing home staffers all weigh in on Wednesdays and somebody always volunteers to make this salad on weigh-in day. We weigh in, eat our salad lunches, and start off the new week right!