This is my favorite frugal recipe combination. This provides dinner for two days, but either recipe is good by itself. An added bonus, both recipes are EASY! Don't fear the cheap recipes; I know these are two of Eric's favorite meals around our house.
Dinner #1 - Honey Baked Chicken
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange in shallow baking pan, skin side up:
One 3 lb. fryer chicken, cut up (or whatever kind of chicken you like or have on hand)
Combine and pour over:
1/3 c. margarine or butter, melted (I will not use margarine for health reasons, but it is cheaper than butter for sure)
1/3 c. honey
2 T. prepared mustard
1 t. salt
1 t. curry powder
Bake 75 minutes for bone-in chicken, basting a few times until chicken is tender and nicely browned. Bake 45 minutes is you're using boneless. Serve over rice.
***In order to get two dinners for the price of one, I usually make extra rice (at least 3 c. cooked) and throw in a little more chicken than the recipe calls for. Unless you have a small family, in which case this recipe will provide leftovers. ***
Dinner #2 - Vietnam Fried Rice
Cook 1 cup rice or have ready 3 cups leftover rice.
Heat in a large skillet:
4 T. cooking oil (I suggest coconut oil or olive oil for health benefits)
1/4-1/2 lb. any cooked or raw meat, chopped (use your leftover chicken!)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 large onion, minced
1 t. salt
1 t. pepper
1 t. sugar
1 T. soy sauce
Stir-fry until meat is tender and hot, about 1-2 minutes. Add:
3 c. cooked rice
Stir-fry 5 minutes. Add:
1 c. leftover or frozen vegetables, such as peas, green beans, carrots, peppers...
Stir well into rice-meat mixture. Just before serving, add:
2 eggs, beaten
Over medium heat, stir carefully through rice until eggs are cooked. Serve piping hot!
Both of these recipes, as well as many more are found in the legendary cookbook "More With Less" (subtitled: suggestions by Mennonites on how to eat better and consume less of the world's limited food resources).
About chicken...I don't really believe it is an economical choice when purchased in the grocery store. Moreover, it is probably not the healthiest choice considering the substandard nutrition chickens are given during mass production. However, we often see chicken for half price around here, and I usually stock up. Better yet, we get a few farm raised chickens from our parents and make the most of them!
What are your favorite penny pinching recipes? Do share!