Chicken in the pot


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Henri IV of France wanted all households in his kingdom to be able to relish in this great dish every Sunday… There are lots of variations on this recipe, I imagine stemming from whatever products were available locally. This one uses the best Normandy has to offer – chicken (or traditionally, hen) leeks, carrots, turnips and, bien sûr, crème fraîche!

Ingredients Serves 4 – 6

1 broiler, about 2 kilos (chicken will do but tends to fall off the bones too readily!)
2 onions, studded with cloves
3 carrots, peeled and chopped into large chunks
3 leeks, chopped and thoroughly washed
3 cloves of garlic, peeled and left whole
3 turnips, peeled
2 sticks of Celery, cut into long batons
Bouquet garni – Bay leaves, parsley, thyme etc…
Salt and pepper
Water
Tub of crème fraîche

Place broiler in a large saucepan and cover with water. Add onions, garlic and bouquet garni. Season well. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 2 1/2 hours (1 hour for chicken).

Meanwhile, prepare vegetables.
Add to chicken and continue simmering until vegetables are soft – about 45 mins.
Add a little of the water from the chicken pot to crème fraîche and heat gently.

Serve the meat from the broiler (minus the skin) on a large platter surrounded with vegetables. Pour the crème fraîche into a sauceboat and place all in the centre of the table.

(Basmati rice works well with this one.)

Bon appétit!

Sinéad

 

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