Wednesday, October 8, 2008

$10 Dinner Challenge: Chicken & Potatoes FTW

Here's what we ate last night for Stefania's $10 Dinner Challenge and it did actually come in under $10!
  • Broiled chicken thighs $4.87
  • Yukon gold mashed potatoes $3
  • Butter $.60
  • Heavy cream $.50
  • Fresh green beans $1
  • 1 teaspoons chicken base $.16
TOTAL $9.63
And the dinner was damn tasty, if I do say so myself. Chicken thighs are one of my favorite go-to meats since I can find Foster Farms brand at $1.29 per pound at Costco. (You can buy them at Winco for .99 cents a pound, but the quality isn't as high). I literally just throw them on the broiler pan with a little salt and pepper and broil them with oven door shut for about a half an hour. The fat mostly drips down into the pan and we don't actually eat the skin, it just keeps the meat moist.

The green beans were my favorite part, though. I ate WAY too many for my little pouch tummy, but MAN, it was worth it. They're really easy to make: brown them in butter and then add a teaspoon of chicken base (I used organic, which is expensive, but healthier) and some water and cook covered for about six minutes or until tender. SO TASTY. Chicken base makes ALL the difference.

The amount of beans pictured above was actually for three dinners: last night's chicken/mashed potatoes and tonight's Shepherd's Pie. I often cook in batches and plan my meals to reduce my kitchen time. Last night I peeled, cooked and mashed NINE pounds of yukon gold potatoes (only a third of them are pictured above). I made extra green beans and while I was watching the debates, I cleaned and sliced two pounds of white mushrooms. Tonight all I have to do is brown some meat, cook the mushrooms and grate some cheese for the Shepherd's Pie. I have enough to make an extra one for the freezer, which I'll put on next week's menu.

I'm really looking forward to reading Stefania's round up post and seeing what everone cooked for $10!


Carrisa said...

Dude, chicken thighs and leg quarters are the way to go for cheap. I don't understand people who don't like dark meat. It's so juicy and flavorful!

Anonymous said...

How do you make your mashed potatoes so fluffy looking? Mine always turn out gummy.
I really enjoy your blog.

Mandajuice said...

Michelle, I never go anywhere NEAR my potatoes with a motor. I buy only yukon gold potatoes, boil them till they split in half with a little pressure from my wooden spoon, drain them and then mash them the old fashioned way with a metal hand masher and some cream or milk. I don't add butter because it tastes better melted on top!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the mashed potatoes tip. I'll have to give it a try.

Kimblahg said...

mmmm shepherd pie sounds good.