Friday, January 4, 2013

45 Quarts of Chicken and Dumplings

I have a new philosophy....if you cook so much that you can't lift it, you have exceeded your limit.  I exceeded my limit yesterday.  This is a 51 quart pot.  You can see that it is enormous on my cook top and this is a big wolf cook top. The red pot to the left is the largest size Le Crueset and it is dwarfed by this monster. I found chicken legs on sale at Aldi's.  A 10# bag was 6.99.  I bought 30 pounds.  What is the best thing you can do with 30 pounds of chicken?  Make Bev's chicken and dumplings (recipe on sidebar).

Very early in the morning I filled the pot with the chicken, butter, stock, bouillon, spices and herbs and salt and pepper.

I recently upgraded to a new food processor and it sure came in handy.  I had my old food processor  for over 10 years and this new one is a drastic improvement.

I added lots of celery to the pot, brought it to a boil and let it simmer for hours until the chicken was falling off the bone.

Then I began picking 30 pounds of chicken which immediately got someone's attention.

She sat like this for over an hour until she realized the "pity poor me" look was not getting her any butter poached chicken.  Butter and puppies is not a good thing.

Picking this much chicken takes a very long time.

I did not leave one bit of fat, sinew or bone. It is an exacting science, haha!

I made a quadruple recipe of dumplings.

And more homemade bread to go with it.

And then I tried to lift the pot.  I could not budge it and I am pretty strong.  It took my husband and I quite and effort to get it to the car.  We think it weighed about 130 pounds.  The guy that came out to help me at the mission laughed when I told him he was going to need help carrying it.  Then he tried to lift it on his own and said, no way!  The line was down the block when I arrived.  I think I made enough to feed about 180 people.  Bev would be so proud!  My next big cooking day will be Sunday.