I love potluck dinners. As I've mentioned before, potlucks are the 20-something's equivalent to a dinner party. You can find out a lot about someone from what they bring to a potluck. Are they laid back (a chips person), sweet and thoughtful (dessert), smart and skillful (complex appetizer) or just plain lazy (Timbits)?
Or are they like Mike? Mike also loves potluck dinners. Let's just say, he gets a little carried away -- in a good way -- when it comes to potlucks. For one potluck, Mike cooked 17 pounds of pork along with 50 buns to make pulled pork sandwiches. For a Christmas potluck, Mike cooked an entire turkey, along with stuffing, roasted vegetables and gravy. Surprisingly, there weren't any leftovers from that party. On Friday we were invited to another potluck and Mike made chicken. Not just one chicken: two roasted chickens with stuffing, roasted vegetables, gravy, dinner rolls and a pumpkin pie. Lucky for us, there were plenty of leftovers to take home.
The chickens were marinated with basil, sage, rosemary, oregano, thyme, chipotle, paprika, margarine and oil. The stuffing was made with frozen bread crusts, chopped celery, apple, lemon juice and the same spices used on the chicken. Roast chicken is probably my favourite go-to meal because it's cheap --$8 a chicken or $5 if they're on sale -- easy and makes about a week's worth of chicken.
The vegetables from the bottom of the pan are always delicious after they've been cooked in the chicken juice. Mike used potatoes, carrots, celery, onions and drizzled them with a little olive oil before putting the chickens on top.
The dinner rolls were a recipe from Mike's Mom. I hope she doesn't mind if I share the secret. He used a standard pizza dough recipe (flour, water, oil, yeast) and rolled three balls for each roll:
Then he formed the three balls together and put them in a muffin tin:
And baked them for about 20 minutes:
For dessert, he made a quick and easy pumpkin pie with a ready-made pie crust, canned pumpkin, evaporated milk and spices:
The potluck was a lot of fun and everyone enjoyed Mike's abundance of contributions. Only one of the chickens was eaten at the dinner, so we brought the other one home for leftovers. On Saturday, we made hot chicken sandwiches for dinner.
Is there anything better than chicken and bread soaked in gravy? I think not. I am a gravy fiend, so I love when food is swimming in gravy. Even after a potluck and hot chicken sandwiches, there was still a ton of chicken left. I plan on making chicken salad sandwiches for lunch, chicken curry and chicken stock with the leftover bones and carcass.
When I said chicken made a cheap and versatile meal, I wasn't kidding.