Friday, March 19, 2010

Fricassee de Poulet (Chicken Fricassee)

As promised here is the recipe for the Chicken Fricassee I cooked last Monday.

Some of you may be wondering what in the world does the word Fricassee stand for, besides sounding like a very expensive time consuming gourmet meal at a fancy French restaurant. Well FYI, "Fricassee" is basically a stew. It can be of meat, poultry, fish or vegetarian. Its a white sauce stew, white sauce meaning nothing but a sauce made with butter, lots of butter, and cream or milk and white wine. Truth is..... the names just seems complicated, but this is truly a dish that can be easily prepared in 1 hour.

Again.... having no pictured of the end result, I had to steal this one from the internet so you can have a better idea of how it should look like.

(note to self: keep a camera in the kitchen counter top)


Ingredients (for 6 people)

1 Chicken (3lbs)
1 Onion
1 Tbs of Butter
2 Tbs of flour
3 Cups of Chicken Stock
1 cup of dry white wine
½ lbs mushrooms
2 egg yolks
½ cup of crème fraîche
Lemon juice
Salt and black pepper

In a casserole cook the chopped onion and carrots in butter for about 5 min in medium heat. Cut the chicken in about 1 dozen pieces, season it with salt and pepper, add it to the casserole. Turn the Chicken every min for about 4 min, till the chicken is lightly golden.
Lower the heat, cover the casserole and let it slow cook for a while, turning the chicken every couple min.
Add black pepper and sprinkle flour on both sides of the chicken. Cover and cook it for another 4-5 min (turn the chicken once)
Bring chicken stock to a boil and add it to the chicken. Add the wine and parsley.. make sure there is enough stock to cover the chicken. Bring it to a boil, check seasoning and let it slow cook for about 30 minutes.
Sautee mushrooms with the butter and a few drops of lemon juice.
Remove mushrooms and chicken from its respective cooking juices. Add the mushrooms juice to the casserole and let it simmer for 3 min. Remove fat from the sauce, increase the heat and let it boil. Stiring till the sauce is reduced to about 16oz.
In a contained mix the egg yolks with the crème fraîche, beat it till its completely diluted. Add the mix to the sauce very gently stiring it constantly. Allowing it to come to a boil and cook it for 1 min. Add 1 tsp of lemon juice, salt and pepper.

Serve with rice and salad.

This recipe is a direct translation from a french recipe minus the carrots. It came out great! Super rich sauce, great taste and the mushrooms add some extra flavor than brings out even more the chicken.

However this is not exactly how I remember it from my childhood. I grew up on the traditional Portuguese FRANGO DE FRICASSE, a lighter version of the French version..... instead of butter we use olive oil, we use garlic and bay leaves while sauteing the chicken, no mushroom or crème fraîche are added to the sauce.

If you ask me which one I like best, I would have to say that though the french version is pretty good the portuguese recipe tastes like "Home".

You be the judge! try it and let us know.

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