Sunday, March 16, 2014

Kitchen 101: How to Shred Chicken with Minimal Time and Effort

I'll never make chicken salad the same way again.  Ever.  Or anything else that requires shredded chicken, for that matter.

Meet Idris.  Yep, I finally got one - a KitchenAid mixer.  After years of hemming and hawing over whether it was worth the hefty price tag, and my other stand mixer that-shall-not-be-named finally kicking the bucket, I got a lovely refurbished unit for Christmas.  (I could not bring myself to ask for a new unit - not when my refurb food processor has kicked serious culinary booty for me for some time now.)  And yeah, I have to say, in the short time I've had my baby, she's worth every red cent.  But this is not meant to be a bragfest - it is to say, stand mixers are useful kitchen tools and can do the best kitchen hack for poultry lovers.

It will shred your chicken.

Okay, so it doesn't seem to be the end-all, be-all, some of you think I was building up to, but!  It means lots of time and effort saved, not to mention, avoiding the accidental wince of burning your fingers on hot, hot chicken.  I may or may not have done that several times in my kitchen career.

After cooking your boneless chicken breast with your preferred method (steaming, poaching, etc.), cut the still hot meat into 3-4 pieces and place it into the bowl of your mixer.  Affix the paddle attachment, lower the head, lock in place and start it up.  I work my way up to Speed 4 on my KA, and in a few seconds, I have shredded chicken.   Freshly cooked chicken tenders buzz up super quick.

Now don't think you are left in the cold if you don't have a stand mixer.  I haven't personally tried this yet, but from what I have read, a hand-held electric mixer will do the same helpful trick.  I would probably cut my chicken into more pieces before trying this out.  If you do happen to try it out with a hand-held mixer, please, by all means, report back on your findings!

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