Thursday, January 28, 2010

Suprême of Old Hen, Or How I Fricasseed my Chicken...

Looking for a Chicken Fricassee recipe last week, I started in my "Joy of Cooking" cookbook. I wanted to update an old classic. Well, I got more than I bargained for! Right beside the Chicken Fricassee recipe, this caught my eye....Isn't that the ultimate, a good dish out of a poorish updated classiccreamed and rouged with a high plume and stylish shoes? I didn't end up using the "Joy of Cooking" recipe, but compiled the best of several different recipes, and think that this updated classic is more than an "acceptable morsel", it is supreme. For this old bird, the blush of vin rouge was the perfect companion.
Chicken Fricassee with Wild Mushrooms

2 1/2 pounds cut up frying chicken (I used chicken breasts)

2 tablespoons butter

1 medium onion, thinly sliced
1 carrot, thinly sliced
1 stalk celery, thinly sliced
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
3 tablespoons flour
3 cups chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine, such as Chardonnay
1 small bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon herb de Provence (mixed herbs)
20 pearl white onions, peeled (may use frozen)
12 ounces mixed mushrooms such as baby bella, shitaki, and chanterel, wiped clean
optional: 1 carrot and 1 stalk celery, cut in julienne
2-3 tablespoons brandy or cognac
1/2 cup heavy cream
few drops of lemon juice
pinch of nutmeg
pinch of cayenne pepper
1/2 sheet puff pastry

Rinse and dry chicken. In a large skillet heat 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot and celery and cook until tender. Remove from skillet, raise heat slightly and add the chicken. Turn several times to cook the outsides of the chicken, for about 5 minutes. Lower heat, return the vegetables back into the skillet, cover and cook for about 10 minutes. Sprinkle the salt, pepper and flour to coat evenly on both sides of the chicken. Cover and continue cooking for about 5 minutes more, turning once. Warm the chicken broth and add to the chicken, stirring to make sure the flour mixture is incorporated without lumps. Stir in the wine. Add the bay leaf and herbs and taste for seasoning. Simmer for about 25-30 minutes or until the chicken is done. Remove chicken and set aside.
Slice the baby bella mushrooms into 1/4 in slices. Slice the chanterel mushrooms in half and leave the shitaki mushrooms whole. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter to a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the pearl onions, mushrooms and the optional julienned carrots and celery. Saute until the vegetables are cooked through, about 10 minutes. Stir in the brandy and cook for just a few minutes more.

Meanwhile raise the temperature of the chicken cooking liquid to boil. Reduce liquid until it thickens and is reduced to about 2 cups. Strain through a fine sieve and return to skillet. Slowly whisk in the cream. Add the nutmeg, cayenne and a few drops of lemon juice. Add the mushrooms, onions and optional carrots and celery. Return to medium heat and heat through. At this point you may serve the fricassee or cool it and refrigerate covered until ready to serve. To reheat, put in a pot over medium heat for about 10 minutes until heated through.

Before serving, cut puff pastry into 3-4 inch diamonds. Bake in a preheated 400 degree oven until lightly browned. Top each serving with the puff pastry diamonds.
Serves 4.

While I was working on this post, I received a wonderful surprise in the mail. Linda, the first winner of my salt giveaway graciously sent a token of thanks...totally unnecessary, but joyfully received. It was a set of small cards that couldn't have been more appropriate than if I had chosen them myself. They went so well with my table setting that I thought if I ever used place cards with this, these small note cards would be perfect.
I went to the website of the printer and just loved everything about her, from her products to her philosophy. Thank you Linda not only for the cards, but for introducing me to this artisan, Ruby Press.

Chicken Fricassee with Wild Mushrooms recipe click here.

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linda said...

of my gosh diane....i have a smile on my face (which is bright red!!)
i emailed ruby to let her know that
she is "famous!"
thank you for your lovely & kind words & i look forward to a wonderful 2010 with 2 stews!
all the best :)

Sam Hoffer / My Carolina Kitchen said...

What a gorgeous dish. You made the old hen proud and gussied her up with the wild mushrooms and the puff pastry. Love the shoes and the while covered casserole. Tres chic.

La Table De Nana said...

Gorgeous post..gorgeous gift..:) I love the association of the word suprême with old hen..:) I wonder why..

Mmmm I am hungry sweet!!

Champagne Macarons said...

Your Chicken Fricassee with Wild Mushrooms dish looks delightful ~ I will be making this very soon!

Thank you for visiting my blog. I appreciate your kind words!
xoxo, B

Zurin said...

Old hen ..supreme...*smile*....nice words together...perfect...and a lovely dish and a wonderful gift!

Mari @ Once Upon a Plate said...

Old hen? Hmmm... it seems I can grin about that one. ;)

Looks delicious Diane! And what sweet gift of appreciation from Linda ~ the cards are beautiful.

The Cooking Photographer said...

"Joy of Cooking" is my food bible still. I can't believe how beautiful you've made this Diane.


Lori (All That Splatters) said...

Chicken is often my protein of choice, so I'm always on the lookout for great chicken dishes. I would say this recipe definitely qualifies! Looks delicious, Diane - thanks!

Linda said...

Looks lovely and what a nice gift you received...

Unknown said...

Congrats for this amazing blog! I've just done your Chocolate Mug Cake and it was simply perfect! Wonderful photos and recipes! I'm from Italy, Tuscany... If you want, visit my blog!

Kate at Serendipity said...

Diane, this is wonderful. You've really dressed up that old hen. She's gorgeous!