In English, to cook ''using'' many chickens suggests that your chickens are cooking instruments like spoons or pots.
To be honest, I would never say 'we are cooking with many chickens' either because this sentence suggests that your chickens are helping you roast themselves! But hey, that's Duo for you! ;)
Thank you, Cha5117.
You've just uncovered one of my many "linguistic" blind spots.
I say that because, when I posted my question above, I was trying to check whether "using" and "with" were interchangeble in the given sentence.
That is, is the sentence "We are cooking using a lot of chicken" the same as "We are cooking with a lot of chicken" ?
(It didn't cross my mind that the use of "many" would give the sentence a somewhat different meaning.)
Yes, they can mean the same thing. I would make the ingredient the direct object: "We are cooking a lot of chicken." People say "with" or "using" when they are talking about spices or other secondary ingredients. "I am cooking chicken with mushrooms" (compare to "à la" in French). Or, "I am using lemon in this chicken dish to give it extra flavor."