Vintage Vittles: Roast Chicken and Biscuits

Written by on January 4, 2014 in Vintage Vittles - No comments
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Split chicken

Is there anything more comforting than roast chicken on a cold winter’s day? What about roast chicken with a hearty side of biscuits? I’ve adapted this recipe from the Favorite Recipes of the Ladies of the Cosmos Society of the Bradley United Methodist Church to add some roasted chicken and make it a full meal.

I have a deep appreciation for church recipe collections. I contributed to every Cookie Walk at my church (Wesley United Methodist, on Tibbs) for years. I made treats for every Administrative Board meeting and helped put out donuts and coffee for Fellowship Time. I attended every potluck, every Pancake Breakfast, every, well, everything. I love church recipes.

A bit about Bradley United Methodist Church, from History of Hancock County, Indiana: Its People, Industries and Institutions:

History of Hancock County, Indiana: Its People, Industries and Institutions History of Hancock County, Indiana: Its People, Industries and Institutions

Historic Recipe for Chicken Biscuits:

Cook chicken with plenty of broth, if not fat add 1/2 cup butter. Make a pan of small baking powder biscuits, cover them with the chicken broth, bake in a quick oven ten to fifteen minutes. Serve them on a meat plate, pouring over and around them plenty of gravy made from the remaining broth.

Source: Favorite Recipes of the Ladies of the Cosmos Society of the Bradley United Methodist Church (Greenfield, Ind.) 

Modern Adaptation, or, rather, Modern Accessory Recipe:

Now, this is a bit more time intensive, but you’ve gotta believe me: it’s worth it. First, we’re going to roast the chicken, and then use the bones to make a stock, which we’ll then use to make the biscuits. It’s such a satisfying process that will ideally leave you with enough stock to make something else too!

Roasting a whole chicken is easy — don’t be intimidated! Now, honey, prepare yourself. Because we’re turning to The Queen of Roast Chicken Herself, Julia Child. Follow along with this perfect roast chicken recipe. Now, when you’re done preparing the chicken, remove the bulk of the meat from the bones and use however you’d like — I’d recommend setting aside in the fridge until these biscuits are done and eating a roast chicken and biscuit lunch!

Now, on to the stock. Plop those meaty bones and the rest of the pan drippings into a large pot. Discard the herbs from your chicken and throw away. Add 2 quarts of water, and some additional veggies — think a couple more onions and carrots, and some more fresh herbs if you’d like. Bring to boil, then simmer gently for two hours. Skim foam from stock occasionally. After two or so hours, strain and set aside for biscuits recipe!

A Note:

Of course, you’ve noticed I’ve used the word “stock” in the last part of this recipe. That’s because there is a difference between stock and broth, just not too much of one. Simply, stock is made with bones and broth is made with meat — that’s why the original recipe says to boil the chicken to make the broth. Here’s more of an explanation.

And, To Read: 

My favorite roast chicken story.

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About the Author

Katherine Coplen is a writer and editor working in Indianapolis, Indiana. She is the Music Editor for NUVO Newsweekly, where she writes about music 1) made in Indianapolis, 2) released on Indianapolis labels, and 3) touring through Indianapolis. Outside of NUVO, Katherine has been published frequently in The Billfold, HerCampus, The Herald Times, The Ryder, The Southside Times, and Livebuzz. She really, really loves food.

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