For most of us, it just wouldn’t be Yom Tov without a brisket. And a roast. And meatballs. And a few 8-piece chickens. And that’s just the first day.

With so many three-day Yom Tov’s, there comes a point where the meat becomes too gluttonous (and too expensive!). Here are some ways our family tries to responsibly make the most of our Yom Tov meat.

1. Whole Fryer Chicken: I always cook the whole fryer–for lack of any other organic chicken option–but the truth is, it tastes better. We carve the chicken before serving it, similarly to a turkey, and then the bird feeds many more guests than an 8-piece cut up chicken does. Everyone takes as many slices as they would like, but instead of leaving half-eaten chicken breast on people’s plates, it’s on the serving platter for later. I then throw the carcass into a stock pot overnight for chicken broth. See my recipe for Herbed Chicken.

2. Leftover Roast: On the second or third night of Yom Tov, we cut up the leftover pieces of roast and toss them into a stir fry, full of veggies and served over rice. This works with chicken too. See my stir fry recipe here.

3. Serve from the Kitchen: This is harder to do with guests, but when it’s just our family eating the meal, we try to serve from the kitchen. This not only reduces the dirty platters, but it helps control portions as well.

4. Lots of Vegetable Side Dishes: We fill the table with lots of salads, veggies and whole grains so that the meat is just one of many yummy dishes.

Chag Sameach!

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