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Posts tagged as chicken

Chicken Broth

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Nov 7, 2013 at 6:21pm

Chicken Broth | Fresh TartHere, in this jar, is the pure gold otherwise known as chicken broth. Utterly delicious yes, but equally as important – soothing. Healing. Not just to my soul, but to my sometimes bitchy digestive system. When I accidentally eat gluten, or hit a non-gluten grain too hard, I had might as well pull out my maternity clothes because seriously, I look l like a full-term Nathan 2.0 is about to arrive. I hate when it happens, and I try mightily to prevent it, but…so it goes in the world of food. The remedy? A mug full of hot chicken broth, made from fresh chicken. Ahhhhhhh, heaven.

It’s gotten to the point that I feel a bit anxious when I’m running low. I keep several containers in my freezer, ready to sip on its own (a perfect snack), or to turn into the best fast soups on the planet (more on that later this week). Chicken broth in a box is so ineffectively limp in comparison, and the real deal is so ding dang easy to make and freeze, that it just doesn’t make sense to be without it.A Chicken Soup Supper | Fresh TartI can’t post about a good, rich chicken broth without reminding you of this cozy M.F.K. Fisher recipe for A Chicken Soup Supper, one of my very favorite dishes.Chicken Broth | Fresh TartThis is more of a process than a recipe:

Chicken Broth

First and foremost, buy seriously good chicken. This elixir is only as healthy and healing as the ingredients you put into it, so spring for a farmers market or co-op chicken, a free-range, hormone-free, locally raised gem (’round these parts, Kadejan, Callister, etc.). Sometimes I buy a whole chicken, sometimes I buy a combo of wings, thighs, and legs, around 3-5 pounds.

Get ready to release some aggression. Set out a large stockpot (or crock pot; notes below). Grab a cleaver, and a large cutting board. Lay the chicken pieces (or whole bird) on the cutting board and start hacking with your cleaver. Like, stand back, make sure no human body parts are anywhere near, and thwack! Hack into the bones in several places, perhaps even through the bones. Toss the hacked pieces into the stock pot as you go. When you’re done, pour about 1/2 cup of white wine into the pot, then add filtered water to cover the chicken pieces by one inch. Add 1 teaspoon or so of dried thyme. Add a bay leaf or two. Add one small, quartered onion as well as three cloves of smashed garlic. Add 3 teaspoons of sea salt.

Set the stock pot over medium-low heat. Bring to a slow, slow simmer, NOT a boil. Do not cover. It will take awhile to come to a simmer, which is great, because you can wash a few dishes, sweep the floor, sip a glass of wine, do some work, or watch a movie while you wait. Check the broth every once in a while. When it’s slowly simmering, turn the heat to low, and let the broth barely simmer for up to 3 hours, skimming occasionally without stirring.

Remove from heat and set aside until cool enough to handle. Line a colander with several layers of cheese cloth and strain warm broth into a large bowl. Discard chicken, bones, and vegetables. I taste for salt and add it at this point, but you can leave it as is and adjust seasoning as you cook with it – your call. Cool broth to room temperature and transfer to storage container(s). I usually transfer to 4 containers, make soup with one, and freeze the other three. Fat will rise to the top, which you can leave in place (for richer broth), or remove when solid and chilled. Up to you.

If you use a crock pot, follow the directions above except add all the ingredients to a large slow cooker and set on low. I like to set it up before I go to bed and let it simmer overnight, for up to 10 hours. I cool and strain the broth in the morning. Crock pot chicken broth is lovely, nice and clear, because it never boils.

Weeknight Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Sep 24, 2013 at 4:58pm

Weeknight Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew | Fresh TartAnd just like that it’s cinnamon season, cool and crispy.

Everyone loves fall, but I think Minnesotans love it more, in a nervous sort of way, bookended as it is between months of sweat and shivering. We understand that open windows are a rare and special treat, enjoyed most heartily right now, in late September/early October, when nights are fresh and days are golden and balmy. We’re maniacal outdoor enthusiasts not because we’re masochists, but because we’re fleeing the year-round trap of closed windows.

I think I just defined us as blissful fall neurotics.Weeknight Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew | Fresh TartWhich I’m fine with, my favorite people are a bit neurotic because they don’t take things for granted. And anyhow…fall is blissful and worth celebrating. The bounty of the season is upon us and it is time to cook! After a summer of salads and cold soups, I’m ready for a hearty stew. I’m ready to plan a dinner party, to set the table with candles, and to pour something serious to drink.

Which is why I suggest this recipe for chicken and squash tagine-inspired stew: 1) it puts a fragrant, meaty stew on your table in less than an hour, 2) it features everyone’s fall-favorite squash, and 3) it provides an opportunity to showcase the talents of my friends sommelier Leslee Miller and cicerone Michael Agnew, who are not only culinary geniuses (truly), they’re also a total blast to hang out with.Weeknight Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew | Fresh TartI’ve leaned on Leslee to suggest wine pairings for past dishes, and thanks to her generosity, I’ll be doing it more in the future (hooray!). But if you’d like to dig deeper, and understand wine and beer basics and the art of pairing to food, then do not miss the back-to-school Beer and Wine University series that Leslee and Michael are teaching together.

In three sessions, they will cover Wine/Beer Bootcamp (October 1), The Art of Pairing (October 8), and Sweet Retreat (October 15) with the energy, humor, and relaxed fun they bring to every event they host. Space is limited for the $40/session classes – sign up for one, two, or all three and be ready for a long winter made bearable with deliciousness. Contact to register.

Until then, Leslee and Michael, offer gorgeous pairings for this sweet/savory stew.

Wine via Leslee: Dominio IV ‘Still Life’ Viognier ~ Columbia River Gorge, Oregon.
Lush with notes of tropical flowers, orange, apricots and white peach, this Viognier has to be one of my favorite whites for the fall season.  Feminine, yet perfectly structured, this wine is a perfect specimen of Pacific NW Viognier.  Biodynamically farmed in the Columbia River Gorge, Dominio IV, is a delightfully small, family-owned winery truly making wines “with intention.”  I happen to think that this wine paired to Stephanie’s autumn stew could be one for the Perfect Pairing section of my food/wine pairings page on Amusée.  Ripe with sweet apricot and honey, yet crisp like the chill of a fresh autumn day – the Dominio IV Viognier is a perfect combo to the subtle spice and delicious savory notes of the soup.

Beer via Michael: Boulevard Tank 7 Saison. Despite it’s 8.5 percent ABV, Boulevard’s Tank 7 Saison is a perky refresher. Spritzy bubbles and a crisp, highly attenuated finish give it a light impression that won’t overwhelm the stew. It’s loaded with fermentation-derived fruitiness that pick up on the apricots, while herbal hops and spicy white pepper notes tie into the savory side. The whole experience is underscored by a subtle malty sweetness.Weenight Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew | Fresh TartRecipe for Weeknight Chicken & Butternut Squash Stew at TC Taste/Minnesota Monthly Magazine.

Fried Chicken with Watermelon, Tomato & Corn Salad

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Sep 17, 2013 at 4:01pm

Fried Chicken with Watermelon Tomato Salad | Fresh TartI’m writing a cookbook called Twin Cities Chef’s Table, to be published by Globe Pequot in spring 2014. The book is a snapshot of the Twin Cities food scene, incorporating recipes and full-color photographs from chefs, growers, and purveyors. Twin Cities Chef’s Table will be part of a series of of beautiful Chef’s Table books that have highlighted various regions and cities around the country. Back when I was considering the proposal, the publisher sent me Cape Cod Chef’s Table, by John Carafoli and Francine Zaslow, which for me sealed the deal. The book is a food fairy’s tale of Cape Cod and its magical bounty of farms, fish, and markets. Smart chefs add just a bit of sparkle to perfect ingredients.

It was actually a non-fish recipe that stole my heart, likely because the dish would happily shine here in the Twin Cities. Folks in every region spread checkered tablecloths on picnic tables and set out platters of fried chicken, watermelon, sweet corn, and garden-ripe tomatoes. What I loved about this dish is how fresh and pretty the components are together, snuggled right into the same dish, pulled together with fresh mint, jalapeno, lime, and honey. Cool and sweet meets hot and salty, always a winning combination.

As an unplanned aside, I happened to possess a bottle of Lucia’s (yes, that Lucia!) maple-mustard vinaigrette, one of a line of best-quality products Lucia has developed with Lakewinds Natural Foods Co-op. While the recipe’s honey/lime dressing is a perfect finish for the salad, I couldn’t resist swiping the fried chicken through Lucia’s dressing. The hint of mustard, smooth and just a bit sweet, yet tangy enough to be addictive, is nice here…and everywhere.

Recipe for Fried Chicken with Watermelon, Tomato & Corn Salad at TC Taste/Minnesota Monthly Magazine.

Avgolemono (Greek Egg Lemon Soup)

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Jun 18, 2013 at 3:24pm

Greek Egg Lemon SoupYou might not think of making a pot of chicken broth on a warm summer day, but I suggest it anyhow. There are just so many fast, flavorful meals that spin out of one simple stockpot, for several days into the week, that it’s the perfect summer Sunday move. Plop a chicken in a pot, add pleasantly salty water, set it on the burner to simmer, and head out to work in your garden. When you come back in, mosquito-bitten and starving, you’ll have tender chicken, fragrant broth, and several options for what to make for dinner. (Especially if you’re harvesting vegetables from that garden!)

First up: Avgolemono, or Greek Egg Lemon Soup. Magically restorative like its culinary cousins chicken noodle and matzo ball, avgolemono’s chicken comfort feels just right in spring and summer thanks to a generous squirt of lemon. It’s traditional to serve plain – just rice, egg yolk, lemon, sometimes with little pieces of chicken – but I love it studded with quickly sauteed seasonal vegetables. Any combination will do: asparagus, chives, mushrooms, carrots, artichoke hearts, peas, fava beans, green beans, pea shoots, spinach…on and on, changing as the season goes along.Avgolemono (Greek Egg Lemon Soup)It’s a little bit amazing what the addition of a few egg yolks does to a pot of broth – think smooth and creamy, without one drop of cream. Despite its velvety texture, this soup is quite light on calories.

Recipe for Avgolemono (Greek Egg Lemon Soup) at TC Taste/Minnesota Monthly Magazine.

PS See below for a Quick Pasta Primavera – also making use of that lovely broth and chicken!

Golden Coin Chicken-n-Shrimp Skewers with Peanut Sauce

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Feb 19, 2012 at 8:40am

golden coin chicken shrimp skewers andrew zimmern

Tender chicken and shrimp wrapped around sugar cane, grilled, then topped with spicy peanut sauce. Wrap in lettuce leaves and devour, preferably less maniacally than I did, I could not get enough of these.

Recipe for Golden Coin Chicken-n-Shrimp Skewers with Peanut Sauce at Andrew Zimmern’s Kitchen Adventures/Food & Wine Magazine.

One-Pot Sticky Chicken Wings

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Oct 18, 2011 at 5:11pm

one-pot sticky chicken wings

Sticky. Glossy. Sweet. Tender. Easy. Addictive.

Recipe for One-Pot Sticky Chicken Wings at Food & Wine Magazine/Andrew Zimmern’s Kitchen Adventures.

Chicken Soup with Kale, Garlic & Sweet Potatoes

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Sep 28, 2011 at 12:55pm

chicken soup with kale & sweet potatoes

My mom is recovering from major surgery here at our home. She spent the first couple of weeks in a hospital and rehab facility, where the food was…truly awful. I brought her little farmer’s market treats like sliced tomatoes and strawberries, to remind her that not all food comes from boxes and cans, but man, the overall effect of feeding healing people crap food is seriously depressing.

She is glad to be here now, noshing what appeals from my endless stream of cooking, and starting to cook for herself again too. She can’t eat more than a few bites of anything at a time – and all she’s truly hungry for is sweets, ha – but she made herself a killer BLT yesterday, thick with a perfect tomato and a pile of freshly picked lettuce, and managed to eat half of it.

Baby steps on the road to recovery.

chicken soup with kale, garlic & sweet potato

She also managed a few bites of this soup, which really hit the spot on a cool, fall day. I love chicken soup for its endless versatility, and of course for its soothing, healing deliciousness. I studded this version with kale, sweet potatoes, garlic, and just a spot of bacon because my mom loves bacon.

I am of her, after all.

This is a nice transitional soup, warm on a cool day, but full of end-of-summer bounty like a garden-ripe tomato. A hint of nutmeg is lovely here, as is a shower of freshly grated Parmesan to finish.

Chicken Soup with Kale, Garlic & Sweet Potatoes
Serves 6

1 roasting chicken, about 3 lbs., patted dry
1 Tbsp. bacon fat or vegetable oil
2 yellow onions, 1 coarsely chopped, 1 diced
6 cloves garlic, 3 smashed, 3 minced
2 ribs celery, 1 halved, 1 diced
2 carrots, 1 halved, 1 diced
1 tsp. dried thyme
6 c. water
1 tsp. Kosher salt plus more to finish
2 slices bacon, diced
1/2 bunch lacinato (Tuscan) kale, ribs removed, sliced thin
1 large sweet potato, peeled & diced
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg (skip for autoimmune protocol)

1 large garden-ripe tomato, diced (skip for autoimmune protocol)
freshly ground black pepper
freshly grated Parmesan cheese (skip for autoimmune protocol)

Make the broth:
Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.

Heat a Dutch oven or casserole with a tight fitting lid over medium high heat. Add the bacon fat or oil and when hot, add the chicken and brown it thoroughly all over. Remove chicken to a plate and set aside.

Turn heat to down to medium and add the coarsely chopped onion, 3 cloves of smashed garlic, 1 halved rib of celery, 1 halved carrot, and thyme. Stir around for a few minutes, then slowly add the water and 1 tsp. of salt. Nestle the chicken back into the pot and bring stock to a simmer. Cover and transfer to the oven. (Or, turn heat to low and simmer on top of the stove.)

Bake (or simmer) chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until chicken is very tender. Remove chicken from the pot to a cutting board (it might break apart into pieces, which is fine) and let cool for a bit.

Strain stock through a colander into a large bowl. Skim fat from stock. Discard strained vegetables.

Make the soup:
Set the Dutch oven over medium heat and add the bacon to the pan. When the bacon is browned and crisp, add the diced onion, diced garlic, diced celery, diced carrot, kale, sweet potato, and nutmeg. Saute for about 10 minutes, stirring a few times, until the onion is softened. Pour in the stock and simmer, uncovered, for 10 minutes or until the carrot and sweet potato are tender.

While the soup simmers, tear the chicken into bite-sized pieces, discarding the skin and bones.

To serve, stir about half of the chicken into the hot soup (reserving the rest for another use) and taste for salt, adding more if necessary. Divide the diced tomato among soup bowls, ladle soup over the tomatoes, top with black pepper and Parmesan cheese, and serve.

Foxy Falafel’s Herby Chicken Skewers with Cucumber Mint Yogurt Dipping Sauce

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Jul 27, 2011 at 7:53am

foxy falafel herby chicken skewers

Every Sunday, Nathan and I eat our way through Kingfield Farmers’ Market. If you follow me on Twitter, then you know that one of our faves is Foxy Falafel. Erica Strait and her crew crank out the best falafel I’ve ever had. Made from sprouted chickpeas, perfectly crisp and fresh, the falafel is nestled atop crunchy slaw and creamy hummus (I order mine without the pita). Add Foxy’s amazing signature sauces and perfect pickles and holy man. So much goodness going on in each bite – heaven!

Erica is also a personal chef and caterer, with a whole catalogue of delicious recipes. She was generous enough to share her popular Herby Chicken Skewers with Cucumber Mint Yogurt Dipping Sauce recipe with me. John and I inhaled these babies, bursting with summer flavor, hot off the grill and swiped through the cool sauce. Foxy recipe at Dara & Co./Minnesota Monthly Magazine.

Braised Moroccan Chicken with Saffron Rice

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on Jun 1, 2011 at 4:11pm

braised moroccan chicken with saffron rice

It is so ridiculously easy and delicious to braise a whole chicken that I do it almost every week, just to have on hand for last-minute meals. I’ve posted my recipe for chicken braised in coconut milk before, but not some of the other variations I play around with, so hopefully this post will round things out.

If you’ve made the coconut milk version, you know that a braised chicken achieves a silkiness in texture that a roasted chicken just doesn’t achieve. It’s almost obscene the way it falls apart into a pile of intensely-flavored goodness, ready to eat as is or perfectly happy to sit in the fridge for a few days getting better and better (that’s why I make one so often).

braised moroccan chicken

I vary the seasoning profile to keep things interesting – the aforementioned coconut curry; Mexican (dried chiles, salsa, cumin, splash of cream); French (fresh herbs, wine, splash of cream); and this Moroccan version. I suggest that you take the formula below and experiment to your heart’s (and palate’s) content.

And then, let me know what you come up with!

The carrots in the picture above are the pickled carrots posted below. They are the perfect, crunchy-sweet condiment for tender chicken.

Braised Moroccan Chicken with Saffron Rice
Serves 4

1 roasting chicken
Kosher salt
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. cumin seeds
1 tsp. coriander seeds
1 medium onion, quartered
2 cloves garlic, smashed & peeled
2 Tbsp. harissa
2 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. freshly grated ginger
2 Tbsp. honey
1 preserved lemon, seeded, chopped
1/2 c. water
freshly ground black pepper

Saffron Rice
1 Tbsp. olive oil
1 Tbsp. butter
1/2 medium onion, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
3 saffron threads, crumbled
1 c. basmati or long-grain rice
1 1/2 c. water
1 tsp. salt

For the chicken:
Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.

Sprinkle chicken generously with salt, inside and out.

In an oven-safe Dutch oven with a lid, heat oil over medium-high heat. Brown the chicken thoroughly on all sides. Don’t rush the process, since the chicken won’t brown much while braising.

While chicken browns, in a small skillet, toast the cumin and coriander seeds until fragrant. Grind them in a mortar & pestle and set aside.

When the chicken is thoroughly browned, transfer to a large plate. Add onion and garlic to the pan and saute for 2-3 minutes, then stir in harissa, paprika, ginger, honey, and preserved lemon. Nestle the chicken back into the pot, breast up, and add water to the pan. Bring to a simmer, cover, and set in the oven.

Bake chicken for 1 1/2 hours or until very tender. Transfer chicken from the pot to a cutting board (it may fall apart, which is fine) to cool a bit. Skim fat from pan juices, then puree juices with an immersion blender or in a blender. Return to the pot and season with salt & pepper.

Using your hands, pull chicken meat into bite-sized pieces, discarding bones (and skin if you don’t like it). Add chicken to the pan juices. Serve warm with saffron rice. Or cool, cover, and chill. Reheat gently to serve.

For the rice:
In a large saucepan, heat oil and butter over medium heat. When hot, stir in onion, garlic, saffron, and rice. Saute until onion softens and rice browns a bit, about 10 minutes. Stir in water and salt, bring to a boil, turn heat to low, and cover tightly. Set timer for 20 minutes.

When rice is done, stir with a fork.

Chicken Piccata with Radish & Pea Shoot Salad

Posted by Stephanie Meyer on May 13, 2011 at 12:40pm

chicken piccata with radish pea shoot salad

Crispy, buttery, salty chicken topped with a fresh salad. It’s all in the contrast. My recipe for Chicken Piccata with Radish & Pea Shoot Salad at Dara & Co./Minnesota Monthly Magazine.