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Perfectly Logical Meal and Budget Planning

Soup and a Side of Fryes…Chicken Soup

Published on: 12-06-2016

As a non-meal planner, I don’t spend my Sundays writing lists. I’ve never taken one to the grocery store and so I usually forget at least six things when I come home. I stare at those women with the coupons filed neatly in the organizers and I wish I could be like them.  Alas, the problem is always the same: How do you know what you need until you actually see it?

But this week is different. This week I’m incentivized to save. To cook for my family every night. To keep us out of restaurants. To show my children that I can be economically prudent when it comes to eating in.

Because this week…I want these:

Perfectly Logical Meal and Budget Planning
Frye Paige Tall Riding Boots, $348

…and these aren’t cheap. These aren’t even on the economic radar despite my astronomically high income as a freelance writer. These are so far from being ‘needed’ that there needs to be a budget cut somewhere. And that cut is going to be dinner. Sorry kids. Frye Boots trump bountiful meals that vary in color and nutritional value.

After doing some basic calculations, I’ve figured out that for around $12, I can get at least three dinners and six school lunches out of one chicken. That saves me….let’s see…approximately $287.50 in meals for three days which means I only need like $60 more dollars for these Frye Boots! I know what you’re thinking: “You spend $287.50 in three days for food?” No, but I didn’t major in math either. Stop focusing on the $287.50 part and look at the fact that you can feed your entire family lunch AND dinner for three days for $12!! That’s a brilliant accomplishment. And a brilliant accomplishment is worthy of these:

Perfectly Logical Meal and Budget Planning
Frye Over-the-Knee Riding Boots $448 (I show another style so you can empathize with my conundrum.)

Okay, so how to do it. Since everyone in my family is sick right now, it’s perfectly appropriate to couch my savings in the form of Chicken Soup. Just the smell of it cooking on the stove is worth $50 alone. Throw in another $10 for the medicinal benefits and I think I’m there!

Everyone I know has their own recipe for chicken soup. But mine is better. So if you want to stick with your family recipe, be my guest. I’m not offended. But if you want the best chicken soup (and chicken salad) in the world, try this. A special thanks to Roslyn Goldberg for taking me on as an apprentice when I was ten.

Chicken Soup (and a side of Fryes)


1 roast chicken
1 or 2 onions (you can save $.39 if you only use one...just sayin')
few stalks of celery
bag of mini carrots that come back home in the lunch box every day
big sprig fresh parsley
big sprig fresh dill
1 diced potato
1 parsnip (that white looking carrot thing)
2-4 heaping (and I mean heaping) tablespoons (not that I'm measuring) of powdered chicken stock (I use Telma or Carmel)


Rinse chicken and get all the yucky stuff out of it.
Put chicken in pot and fill with enough water to cover chicken.
Boil and throw out water to get the rest of the junk off of the chicken.
Add more water to the pot and cover chicken. But this time add all of the other stuff too.
Bring to a boil.
After stock boils, turn to a very low simmer and cover for at least 6 hours.
Turn off stove and let soup cool completely before doing anything with it.
Now here's the fun part. You don't want to lose any broth in the process...remember it needs to keep its currency high!
Grab another pot and put a strainer inside so it sits on top. Dump the soup into the strainer (chicken and veggies will still be in it).
Carefully remove the chicken from the strainer and put into another bowl (this process takes a lot of bowls). It will fall apart. But remove all of the skin and the bones. Soup will now look like this:
Remove all of the other veggies and put into a blender, then put them back into the soup. Chill the soup and skim the fat before serving. This stuff freezes GREAT btw.
Now...with that chicken... Take it and chop it coarsely and add a dash of S&P. Add a scoop or two of mayonnaise. If you live in Georgia or Alabama, add the entire jar of mayonnaise.
Throw in some chopped raw celery if you have any left. Chicken salad will be DELICIOUS!!!
Visit or your nearest Frye store.
Enjoy your soup and a side of Fryes with all that money you saved making a meal that lasts for like three weeks.

I love Sour Patch Kids. I'd eat Ranch dressing on my shoe. My kids think I like my computer more than I like them. I have road rage.
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