This is a French classic and a perfect Sunday dinner, as it doesn’t take too long to prepare but just a bit of time to cook away slowly. Warning: it will fill the house with an amazing aroma, which will tease everyone and get them hungry, and make your next-door neighbours jealous and cranky!
Ingredients (4-5 serves)
1.5kg free-range organic chicken, disjointed
3 cloves of garlic, 2 slices and 1 crushed
3 Sprigs thyme, leaves picked
2 sprigs Rosemary, leaves picked
3 sage leaves
150g pancetta, diced
2 tbsp black olives, sliced
5 large shallots, peeled and halved
300g mixed mushrooms, cleaned and halved
1.5 cup of white wine
3tbsp Fresh cream
1 small bunch coriander
Sea salt & freshly ground pepper
1. Pre-heat 10ml of olive oil in a large non-stick heavy bottom pan. Add in the sliced garlic, sage leaves, chicken, rosemary and thyme and season with salt & pepper. Sizzle for 10 minutes or until the chicken is sealed and light golden brown and stir regularly.
2. In the meantime, pre-heat a separate frying pan with a small splash of olive oil and 10g butter and stir in the shallots, crushed garlic, pancetta and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. After 2 minutes, stir in the mushrooms and olives and cook until the mushrooms look brown and nice.
3. Combine the mushroom mixture and the meat in the bigger pan and top with the wine. Cook for 10 minutes or until the wine has reduced by half and the alcohol has evaporated. Close and place in the oven to cook for 40-60 minutes on low heat. If your pan isn’t oven proof, keep it covered on low heat and check regularly or transfer to a warm slow cook dish.
4. Check the liquid amount after 40 minutes. Take out any skin bits that have separated from the meat. If it looks a bit too dry, add a bit of water in. If it looks too liquid, cook uncovered for a few minutes. Once you’re happy with the texture, stir in the fresh cream, chopped coriander and season to taste.
Serve with salad and mash. You can also replace the fresh cream with a spoon of corn flour to thicken the sauce at the end or skip it altogether for a lighter version. You can also replace the mash with tagliatelle pasta for a change. If you don’t like the idea of disjointing a whole chicken yourself, you can also use pre-cut chicken legs and thighs, but make sure you buy good quality free-range chicken otherwise it could end up fatty and gristly.