Of the goodies I received from Polyface Farms, the stewing chicken was one I was really looking forward to.

Stewing chickens are -generally- not actually raised for food production.  They are older laying hens who just aren’t laying like they used to.   They -generally- are larger birds since they’ve been around a while and have had the opportunity to grow, and while not suited for quick-cooking, are excellent slowly stewed.  They can be really rich and flavorful with meat literally falling off the bone.

I got 1 out of 3.  Sorta.

My big ol’ stewing hen was a pretty scrawny stewing hen.  It was maybe the size of a standard fryer but without anywhere near the meat.  And I simmered that bird for hours and it was tough and stringy.  Tough.

The original dinner plan was to stew the chicken, pull the meat from the bones and make a cream sauce with vegetables and put mashed sweet potatoes on top – pop back into the oven to brown a bit.

Pretty basic.

But that chicken just didn’t have enough ooomph.  I ended up making the chicken and vegetables but chopping the sweet potatoes and cooking them off in the pan.

Dinner was good – and we had leftovers for lunch today – but it wasn’t the stellar chicken I was expecting.

Oh well.  I’m doing an interesting beer and soy sauce marinade tonight for some beef.  It’s pouring rain outside – and I do mean pouring – but I plan to grill nonetheless.

There’s always the next meal to look forward to!