Cajun Chicken Stew

Hi there!

Happy first double digit day in December!

Um.

That means there are only 14 days until Christmas.

*passes out*

I’m SO not ready.

So, I woke up this morning to this.

image

Blech.

8-miler in the freezing rain? Um, no.

I’ll cover those miles tomorrow when it’s JUST freezing.

Yeah, still blech but at least it won’t be wet! It’s the small things, you know. πŸ™‚

Okay, last night I made the most amazing chicken stew.

I’ve had this recipe set aside to make for a couple of weeks now and it finally happened.

O. M. G.

I’ll be honest – this stew is a little labor intensive but I promise you that it’s worth it.

First, you have to cut a whole chicken.

THAT’S an adventure in itself!

But, it’s worth it the work.

See?! Easier than you thought, right? πŸ™‚

(the bonus about that video is the guide to making stock!)

Then, you have to make a roux.

Wait! Don’t run away! Come baaaack!

Okay, phew, that was close. Glad you came back. πŸ™‚

I know, I know – making a roux is HARD and scary!

Believe me, I’ve tried them before and, well, let’s just say they didn’t work out so well … and we ordered pizza.

But, not this time!

It did take some time – about 20 minutes (WORTH IT! Pour a glass a wine, put on some music and make a party out of it!) – but, it turned out fabulously and I’m pretty sure it’s because the directions say to scrape back and forth instead of stirring.

I don’t know WHY that makes a difference but it did.

My roux turned out perfectly! πŸ™‚

Then, once the chicken gets back in the pot, you have to deal with the wonderful smells for about another 30 minutes while the chicken cooks.

I seriously just stood by the stove and sniffed.

So. Amazing.

Make this stew. Make it!

Cajun Chicken Stew
Recipe from Gourmet Magazine, May 2004
makes 6 servings

3 to 6 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 (3- to 3 1/2-pound) chicken, cut into serving pieces
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 medium onion, chopped
1 medium green bell pepper, chopped
1 celery rib, chopped
3 cups water
1/4 teaspoon cayenne, or to taste (I used 1/2 teaspoon but I wanted a little kick)
3/4 cup thinly sliced scallion greens

1. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a 4- to 5-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Pat chicken dry and sprinkle with salt. Brown chicken in 4 batches, turning, about 5 minutes per batch, transferring as browned to a large bowl.

2. Add enough of the remaining oil to pot to total 1/4 cup fat, then stir in flour with a flat metal or wooden spatula and cook over moderately low heat, scraping back and forth constantly (not stirring), until roux is the color of milk chocolate, 10 to 20 minutes.

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Add onion, bell pepper, and celery and cook, scraping back and forth occasionally, until onion is softened, about 8 minutes.

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3. Add water to roux mixture and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally until roux is incorporated. (Roux will appear curdled initially, but it will come together as it reaches a boil.)

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Add chicken and any juices accumulated in bowl, then simmer, partially covered, until chicken is cooked through, 30 to 35 minutes.

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Stir in cayenne, scallion greens, and salt to taste and serve over rice.

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OM. NOM. NOM.

Question: What’s your favorite food/cooking magazine?

Mine are Cooking Light and Food & Wine. πŸ™‚

– jennifer

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