Monday, November 20, 2006


At Judy's request in my previous post, here is my recipe for Chicken Cider Stew. I can tell you that I don't make it exactly the same every time. It all depends on what I feel like and what produce looks good in the supermarket. All of the veggies are optional, it's just a matter of taste.

Also keep in mind that I overcook all the time. I always have tons of leftovers. This stew requires a very large pot if you make in the same proportions that I do. It is excellent reheated the next day. I also freeze leftovers in those chinese soup containers.

  • 1 package boneless, skinless chicken thighs cut into lg chunks
  • 1 package boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into lg chunks
  • flour for dredging
  • olive oil and butter for browning
  • 1 lg white onion (you can substitute 2 sm yellow onions or even shallots) minced, I use a mini food processor, I'm lazy
  • 2 tsps chopped garlic
  • 1 32 oz carton of Swanson chicken broth (I prefer it b/c it is less salty)
  • 1 bag mini peeled carrots (you can peel and cut lg ones - again, lazy)
  • 1 bunch celery cut into chunks (no leaves)
  • 2-3 lg parsnips peeled and cut into chunks (parsnips look like albino carrots and they are a bit sweeter)
  • 2 small turnips peeled and you guessed it cut into chunks (the sm ones, not those huge ruttabaga ones)
  • 1 head fennel (anise) remove stalks and eat raw if you like, core and chop or slice head (this tastes like black licorice when raw, but gets sweet and delicious when cooked)
  • Optional: 1 or 2 peeled and diced apples, I like Romes, but any cooking apple works
  • 1 qt (more or less) fresh apple cider, this is the refrigerated cloudy stuff, the clear liquid found in the juice aisle isn't the same
  • handful fresh dill chopped
  • handful fresh watercress chopped
  • fresh parsley chopped (dried works ok for this, but the dill and watercress must be fresh)
  • some type of starch (you can use small red potatoes, no chopping required! [did I mention sometimes I'm lazy??] or quartered, peeled white potatoes or orzo pasta)
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch mixed w/ equal amount of COLD water
  • salt & pepper to taste

1. Sprinkle salt and pepper on all the chicken. Dredge in flour.
2. Brown in batches in the bottom of your stew pot in a mixture of butter and oil. The butter is for flavor but it has a low smoke point which is why you need the oil.
3. Remove chicken once it is browned [but not necessarily cooked through] and put in a bowl to the side.
4. Add onions and garlic and saute w/ a sprinkle of salt until tender.
5. Once the onions and garlic are cooked add the chicken stock and use a wooden spoon to deglaze the pan (scrape all the yummy browned bits on the bottom)
6. Add chicken (along w/ any juices) and bring to a simmer.
7. Add all the chopped veggies and the apple cider. (Add potatoes first so they are at the bottom since they take the longest to cook, if you are using orzo pasta as your starch don't add it yet!)
8. Bring to a low boil and let cook for 40-45 minutes. Once you get it to temperature you can turn the burner all the way down and all that liquid will hold the heat.
9. Next add the fresh herbs, salt and pepper to taste and the Orzo if you are using it.
10. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring to blend everything.
11. Mix cornstarch and cold water, pour into stew and stir to incorporate.
12. Let come to slight boil. (This is to thicken the stew, you have to bring it back to a boil in order for it to work.)

Serve in bowls with crusty bread and enjoy!


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