Chicken Provencale

A recipe for Chicken Provencal
There must be millions and millions of recipes for chicken are out there – does that make it a really boring option or a very versatile food?. I like to think positively about my birds and include chicken once or twice a week in what we cook. As we have a small child it is a really popular dinner.  Easy to cook but overdone & rubbery or just plain bland are the main chicken sins I have encountered and made on my way to creating a great chicken dish. I always make chicken casseroles by poaching a chicken first, Its the only way to get delicious juicy soft chicken and you get so much meat off the carcass it makes enough for now and some for later. I made this twice the same week, the first time to get the recipe the way I wanted it and the second time for the crowd I was feeding. Dom ate it twice though and didn’t complain so I’m taking that as approval. The herbs de provence I used contained a mix of dried thyme, savory, basil and oregano. They were carried all the way home from Nice but there are many varieties locally available. Let me know what you think or share your favourite casserole recipe…

Serves 6
1 Poached chicken (poach in water with some veggies and you get delicious stock as a bonus)
100gr mushrooms
100gr lardons
2 medium white onions sliced
2 cloves of garlic peeled and crushed
1 tbsp herbs de provence
Small glass of white wine
1 jar tomato passata (usually about a pint)
1 ltr stock
1 pint Cream
1 tbsp gluten free flour
1 bay leaf
2 tbsp chopped flat leaf parsley

Heat a tbsp oil in a large pot and add the lardons and fry on medium heat until brown.
remove and add the mushrooms and a little more oil if needed and fry until browning. Season when the browining has begun – if you do it too early them will release water and become soggy.
Remove and add the onions and garlic and fry until soft.
Add the flour and work until it starts to cook.
Add the herbs de provence, Tip the mushrooms and lardons back in, turn up the heat and add the white wine and stir.  Reduce the heat to medium when the alcohol has fizzled away.
Add in the stock , the tomato passata the cream and bay leaf.
Season again and let it simmer for about 10 minutes until the flavours have developed and you are happy with the flavours and seasoning.
Shred the meat off your poached chicken and tip into the sauce
Bring up to temperature and make sure the chicken is hot.
At the last minute sprinkle in the flat leaf parsley and serve with your choice of rice or other vegetable

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