Chicken Chasseur (Hunter Stew)

img_2233I enjoy broiled, baked or roasted chicken as much as the next person, but it does get boooooring! While staring at my fridge and pantry hoping for inspiration, I realized that I had all of the makings for chicken chasseur. I’m sure that there are many versions of this dish, some that are more complicated and also fattier. I have nothing against some good old fat – especially butter  or lardons- but this version is based on one by Jacques Pepin from his cookbook Jacques Pepin’s Table. His version calls for chicken thighs on the bone, which are flavorful and less prone to drying out than the breast meat; however, I had boneless chicken breasts in my fridge so that is what I used. I made a couple of other small adjustments to suit personal taste. This version is delicious and simple enough to make on a weeknight and is ready in under an hour.

Chicken Chasseur

Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients

1 Tablespoon EVOO

About 2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken breasts (If they are large, cut them into two pieces each)

1 leek, trimmed, cleaned and thinly sliced (White and light green part only)

1 large shallots, peeled, halved and thinly sliced

1.5 Tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 cup dry white wine (I happened to have an open dry rose so that was what I used)

1 can (15 ounces) diced tomatoes in their own juice (I like fire-roasted)

6 cloves of garlic, peeled, crushed and finely chopped (about 1 Tablespoon)

12 ounces of small to medium mushrooms, cleaned and trimmed (Cut in half  or even quarters if they are larger)

1 teaspoon dried thyme or 2 teaspoons fresh

3/4 teaspoon dried rosemary or 1.5 teaspoon fresh

3/4 teaspoon dried tarragon or 1.5 teaspoons fresh

1 teaspoon Kosher or Sea Salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper

Directions

  1. Heat the EVOO in a large non-stick or heavy-bottomed skillet. Add the chicken breasts in one layer and cook them for 5 minutes on each side over medium high heat. Transfer the breasts to a large platter and cover lightly with foil to keep warm.
  2. To the drippings in the pan, add the leek and onion and saute for 1 minute. Add the flour and mix it in well for about 30 seconds. Then pour in the wine and tomatoes and bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat.
  3. Add back the chicken breasts. Stir in the garlic, mushrooms and all of the herbs and seasonings EXCEPT for the tarragon. Bring the mixture to a boil over high heat, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. Cover the pan and reduce the heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes more. If you are using chicken on the bone or dark meat, you may have to cook a little longer.
  4. When ready to serve, sprinkle in the tarragon. This is delicious as is but I like to serve it over a flat ribboned pasta like a pappardelle. It only needs a green salad to complete the meal – well and wine, of course!

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