Chicken with a Vegetable Cream Sauce

Oh my!  This is my new favorite recipe for chicken even though I’ve said that about 3 or 4 different recipes in the past month or so.  Again, I am amazed at how such simply ingredients, cooked in a very simply way result in the most flavorful and impressive meal.
I am still working my way through Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child, Simone Beck and Louisette Bertholle.  This recipe is a slightly variation from the recipe for Suprêmes de Volaille à l’ Écossaise.  Suprêmes are boneless and skinless chicken breasts.  In the cookbook they outline a very specific way to cook these.  The recipe roughly translates to Scottish style chicken breasts.  I am guessing the cream is what makes is Scottish.

The variation is that I did not use chicken breasts for this recipe but chicken legs instead.  Again, I got some plump and juicy chicken legs from the butcher.  I prefer chicken legs because they are cheaper, less stringy and more flavorful than breasts…in my opinion anyway.

I cooked the legs in the same style as the Poulet Sauté recipe but followed the Volaille à l’ Écossaise recipe for the sauce.  The end result was a succulent chicken dish with a perfectly silky cream sauce.  You must try this recipe!

Mom, if you are reading this across the sea, you MUST make this recipe.  It is absolutely incredible.

Serve with something fresh and light such as asparagus, carrots or green beans.

Difficulty:  Easy
Serves: 3 – 4
Cooking time:  30 – 40 minutes

Variations:  You can make the original recipe using chicken breasts.  As there are specific instructions for this that do not follow the cooking instruction below I suggest you get yourself a copy of the cookbook.  I suggest you get a copy anyway.

Ingredients:
6 – 8 chicken legs
Butter
Extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1 medium carrot
1 – 2 celery stalks
1 medium onion
1/8 pint chicken stock
1/8 pint dry white wine
1/2 pint cream
2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

Instructions:

  1. Finely chop your carrot, celery and onion.  (I forgot that I had used up the last of my carrots so I had to omit this from the one I made and took pictures of below.  It was still amazing but I will make sure I have carrot next time.)
  2. Wash and dry each piece of chicken thoroughly.  If you have not dried your chicken all the way the water could cause the oil to spit and your chicken will not brown as nicely.
  3. Use a large and deep frying pan, cast iron skillet or cast iron casserole dish with a lid.  I used my Le Creuset casserole dish. Place the dish over a moderately high heat and add a knob of butter and a tablespoon of oil.
  4. When the butter has melted into the oil add the chicken.  Brown the chicken, turning as needed to brown all sides.

  5. If all of your chicken does not fit then brown a few pieces at a time, remove from the pan and set aside and then add more chicken.  Repeat this until all the chicken is browned.
  6. While your chicken is browning,  in a medium or large saucepan cook the carrot, celery and onion in a bit of butter and oil over a low to medium heat.  Make sure to add a dash of salt for flavor.  This could take about 10  minutes.  Do not brown, just cook until soft.

  7. When the vegetables are through cooking put them aside.

  8. When you have browned your chicken, season your chicken with salt and pepper.  Return all the chicken to the pan and add the vegetables.  Add more oil and butter if necessary.  Cover and cook for 25 minutes over a medium heat.  Baste the chicken 2 to 3 times while cooking.  The meat is cooked when the juices run clear when poked with a fork.

  9. Remove the chicken when done and place on a warm plate.  Keep warm while you make the sauce.
  10. Pour the chicken stock and white wine over the juices and vegetables in the frying pan.  Turn the heat up to moderately high and boil until the liquid thickens.
  11. Stir in the cream and continue to stir and boil until the sauce thickens a bit more.
  12. Remove from the heat and  add parsley and salt and pepper to taste.  (I added the parsley at the very end once the sauce had been poured over the chicken.)
  13. Pour over the chicken or serve on the side.  Enjoy!

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