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Chicken Fricassee Recipe

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Chicken Fricassee Recipe

Chicken Fricassee is a classic French dish that combines the tenderness of stewed chicken with the richness of a creamy white sauce. This comforting dish is perfect for family dinners, bringing a touch of elegance and heartiness to the table. Its combination of flavors and textures makes it a favorite in many households.

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The History and Appeal of Chicken Fricassee

Chicken Fricassee, or “fricassée de poulet” in French, is a traditional dish that dates back to the 16th century. It’s a hybrid between a sauté and a stew, where the chicken is first browned and then slowly simmered in a flavorful sauce. This method ensures that the chicken remains tender and juicy while absorbing the rich flavors of the sauce.

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Ingredients Needed

Before you start, gather the following ingredients:

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Main Ingredients

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken drumsticks
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 carrots, sliced
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced
  • 1 cup white mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine (optional)
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • Fresh parsley, chopped (for garnish)

Optional Add-Ons

  • 1/4 cup peas (for a pop of color and sweetness)
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika (for added flavor)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice (for a touch of acidity)

Preparing the Ingredients

  1. Prep the chicken: Pat the chicken pieces dry with paper towels and season them generously with salt and black pepper. Lightly coat each piece in flour, shaking off any excess.
  2. Chop the vegetables: Finely chop the onion, mince the garlic, and slice the carrots, celery, and mushrooms.

Cooking the Chicken

  1. Heat oil and butter in a large skillet: Over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and butter to a large skillet or Dutch oven.
  2. Brown the chicken: Place the chicken pieces skin-side down in the skillet. Cook for about 5-7 minutes on each side, or until the skin is golden brown. Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside.

Making the Sauce

  1. Sauté the vegetables: In the same skillet, add the chopped onions, garlic, carrots, celery, and mushrooms. Sauté until the vegetables are softened and the onions are translucent.
  2. Deglaze the pan: Pour in the white wine (if using) to deglaze the pan, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom. Let it simmer for a minute or two until reduced.
  3. Add the liquids: Stir in the chicken broth, heavy cream, bay leaf, and dried thyme. Bring the mixture to a simmer, stirring occasionally.

Combining Chicken and Sauce

  1. Return the chicken to the skillet: Place the browned chicken pieces back into the skillet, nestling them into the sauce.
  2. Simmer together: Reduce the heat to low, cover, and let the chicken simmer in the sauce for about 30-40 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and tender.

Serving Suggestions

Serve Chicken Fricassee over a bed of rice, mashed potatoes, or with a side of crusty bread. Garnish with freshly chopped parsley for a touch of color and freshness.

Variations and Customizations

Different Proteins

  • Turkey: Turkey thighs or drumsticks can be used for a different but equally delicious result.
  • Fish: Firm white fish like cod or halibut can also be used in place of chicken.

Alternative Herbs and Spices

  • Tarragon: Adds a unique flavor that pairs well with chicken.
  • Rosemary: Provides an aromatic touch to the dish.

Tips for Perfect Chicken Fricassee

  1. Don’t rush the browning: Properly browning the chicken adds depth of flavor to the dish.
  2. Adjust the sauce thickness: If the sauce is too thick, add a bit more chicken broth. If too thin, let it simmer uncovered until it reduces to your desired consistency.
  3. Season at every step: Ensure the dish is well-seasoned at each stage of cooking.

Health Benefits of Ingredients

  • Chicken: A great source of lean protein, essential for muscle building and repair.
  • Garlic: Known for its immune-boosting properties and ability to lower cholesterol levels.
  • Vegetables: Carrots, celery, and mushrooms provide essential vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Conclusion

Chicken Fricassee is a timeless classic that combines rich, creamy flavors with the wholesome goodness of tender chicken and vegetables. This recipe is perfect for anyone looking to create a comforting and delicious meal that’s sure to impress. Whether for a family dinner or a special occasion, Chicken Fricassee brings a touch of French elegance to your table.

FAQs

1. Can I use boneless, skinless chicken breasts?

Yes, but the cooking time will be shorter. Be sure not to overcook the breasts to keep them juicy.

2. How do I store leftovers?

Store leftovers in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat gently on the stovetop to avoid overcooking the chicken.

3. Can I make this dish ahead of time?

You can prepare the chicken and sauce ahead of time and reheat them together before serving. However, the sauce may thicken upon cooling, so you might need to add a bit of chicken broth when reheating.

4. What can I use if I don’t have heavy cream?

Half-and-half or a mixture of milk and a bit of butter can be used as a substitute for heavy cream.

5. Can I freeze this dish?

It’s best to freeze the chicken and sauce separately. Store them in airtight containers for up to 3 months. Thaw in the refrigerator before reheating.

Source: chilipeppermadness.com

Yield: 6

Chicken Fricassee Recipe

Chicken Fricassee Recipe

Chicken Fricassee is a classic French dish that combines the tenderness of stewed chicken with the richness of a creamy white sauce. This comforting dish is perfect for family dinners, bringing a touch of elegance and heartiness to the table. Its combination of flavors and textures makes it a favorite in many households.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 55 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 5 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup vegetable oil or use peanut oil (divided)
  • 6 bone-in skin on chicken thighs you can use skinless and boneless, or any cut of chicken, really
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun seasonings + 1 teaspoon (divided)
  • 1/2 cup flour + 1 cup for dredging the chicken
  • 1 large onion chopped
  • 1 bell pepper chopped
  • 2 jalapeno peppers chopped (optional, for more heat, or use serranos for even hotter)
  • 4 stalks celery chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic chopped
  • 3-4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Hot sauce to taste

Instructions

  • Heat 1/4 cup oil in a large pot.

  • Add 1 cup flour to a large bowl and stir in 1 teaspoon Cajun seasonings (and salt and pepper to taste, if desired).

  • Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture, then sear the chicken in the hot pot until the skins start to brown, about 5 minutes per side. Remove the chicken and set aside for now. Discard seasoned flour.

  • Add the remaining oil and stir in 1/2 cup flour to form a white batter. This is your roux. Cook, continuously stirring, until the roux darkens to the color of light chocolate. This should take about 20 minutes. It is important to keep stirring. Do not let the roux burn at the bottom of the pot.

  • Add the onion, peppers and celery. Stir and cook for 5 minutes to soften.

  • Add the garlic and remaining 1 tablespoon of Cajun seasonings. Stir and cook for 1 minute.

  • Stir in the chicken stock, bay leaf and hot sauce to taste.

  • Add the chicken back to the pot and cover. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is falling off the bone.

  • Serve! I like to serve mine over white rice or with cooked noodles.

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