Wednesday, 28 February 2018

Chicken & Vegetable Stew

Warming Chicken and Vegetable Stew, what better way to beat the cold weather!

So this is the official food of the Beast from the East! This chicken stew will warm you from the inside out and considering that temperatures will not rise above freezing for the next couple of days and there is snow falling as I type then I think this is the recipe for you. 

Talk of Status Red warnings and dangerous driving conditions has blanket coverage on the radio and the television, all this before Storm Emma makes her appearance! 

I love this recipe because apart from a bit of time preparing the vegetables it pretty much cooks itself. Want to add a splash of white wine, no problem any wine that's good enough to drink with your meal can be added at the cooking stage and it will give your stew some extra flavour. Your choice of chicken stock is very important because it will impart the most flavour so don't skimp, add a good quality rich in flavour stock.

Warming Chicken and Vegetable Stew, what better way to beat the cold weather!

So it's time to get out and make an enormous snowman, warm up afterwards with hot chocolate topped with whipped cream in front of a roaring fire and relax...well that's what I'm planning to do anyway :)

Serves 4-6

1 tbsp Vegetable oil
250g Smoked streaky rashers
1 Clove of garlic, crushed
1 Onion, finely chopped
3-4 Carrots, peeled and sliced
1-2 Parsnips, peeled and sliced
125g Mushrooms, sliced in half (optional) 
250ml White wine (optional)
700g Chicken fillets
500 -750ml Good quality chicken stock

Preheat the oven to 180°C/ 350°F/ Gas Mark 4.


Wash, peel and chop the vegetables, crush the garlic and slice or quarter the mushrooms (if using). 

Using a clean chopping board and knife, slice the smoked streaky rashers into thin strips. Heat the oil over a medium heat in an ovenproof saucepan or cast iron casserole dish. Add the rashers to the saucepan and brown for 3-5 minutes, stirring frequently until they begin to crisp around the edges.

Add the garlic and onion to the rashers and cook for a further 2-3 minutes - keep stirring to prevent the garlic from burning, burnt garlic will give a bitter taste to the stew- add the remaining vegetables to the saucepan and cook for 1-2 minutes. Add the 250ml of wine (if using) and bring to the boil. 

Add the whole chicken fillets to the vegetables, stir the stew and add the chicken stock, just enough to cover the meat and vegetables. Season to taste with salt and fresh ground pepper. Bring to the boil, remove from the heat and place the stew with the lid on into the preheated oven. Cook for 80- 90 minutes or until the chicken is cooked.

Using two forks, pull the chicken fillets apart into bite sized pieced. If the chicken is pink in the middle or any sign of pink juices, cook for a further 10-15 minutes. Serve with mounds of fluffy mashed potato or on it's own in warmed bowls with crispy bread on the side to mop all the tasty juices.

Warming Chicken and Vegetable Stew, what better way to beat the cold weather!

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