Chicken is kept cold during
distribution to retail stores to prevent the growth of bacteria and to increase
its shelf life. Chicken should feel cold to the touch when purchased. Select
fresh chicken just before checking out at the register. Put packages of chicken
in disposable plastic bags (if available) to contain any leakage which could
cross-contaminate cooked foods or produce. Make the grocery your last stop
before going home.
At home, immediately place chicken in a refrigerator that maintains 40 °F, and
use within 1 or 2 days, or freeze at 0 °F. If kept frozen continuously, it will
be safe indefinitely.
Deep-Dish Chicken Pie
2 young frying chickens (about 3 lbs. each)
1 medium onion, chopped
3 medium carrots, cut in 1 inch pieces
2 sprigs parsley
1 bay leaf
1 stalk celery, coarsely chopped
1 T. salt
1/4 t. dried thyme
4 C. water
1/4 C. butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
1/4 C. finely chopped celery
3 T. flour
dash each white pepper and ground nutmeg
1/2 C. frozen peas, thawed
4 oz. fresh button mushrooms, sliced
salt and pepper to taste
Quarter chickens for simmering. In 6-quart Dutch oven, combine chicken, onion,
carrots, parsley, bay leaf, celery, salt, thyme and water. Bring to a boil,
reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until chicken is fork-tender (about 1
Strain and reserve broth; measure out 2 cups for cream sauce, freezing remainder
for another use. Remove chicken from bones, cut into generous bite-size pieces.
Reserve carrots, discarding remaining ingredients from broth.
Preheat oven to 425°F. In a 3-quart saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add
onion and celery; cook until onion is soft but not browned. Stir in flour,
pepper and nutmeg, cooking until bubbly. Remove from heat and gradually stir in
the 2 cups of reserved chicken broth. Return to heat and cook, stirring, until
mixture is thickened.
Mix in chicken pieces, carrots reserved from cooking chicken, peas and
mushrooms. Salt to taste. Spread mixture in round baking dish about 9 inches in
diameter and 2 inches deep. (At this point pie can be refrigerated and held
several hours or until the following day.)
To prepare pie for baking, fit pastry into place over top of filling; trim and
flute edge. Cut slits for steam to escape. Bake until pastry is golden and
filling is bubbly (30 to 40 minutes).