This traditional recipe for the famous Flemish chicken stew hails from Ghent.
Source: Katrien Vander Straeten
Ingredients for about 8 people
- 1 whole stewing chicken or chicken pieces if you prefer
- 1 bay leaf
- Herb bouquet of sprigs of parsley and thyme tied together
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 6 cups high quality chicken broth
- 4 carrots, very finely chopped
- 4 large leeks, white parts only, rinsed and thinly sliced
- 1 pound baking potatoes, peeled and cut to the size you prefer
- 1 cup heavy cream
- fresh parsley, finely minced, for garnish
- salt and pepper
- Clean the bird of excess fat and rinse.
- Season with salt and pepper. If using a whole chicken, put the bay leaf and herb bouquet into the bird’s cavity.
- In a heavy cooking pan (a Dutch over is best), melt the butter.
- Cook the onions until translucent, not brown (about 5 minutes).
- Place bird breast side up in the pot. If using bird pieces, simply throw in the bay leaf and herb bouquet.
- Add enough chicken broth to cover the meat.
- Cover pot and simmer over low heat for about 30 minutes.
- Skim surface to remove fat and foam.
- Add carrots and leeks.
- Cover the pot and cook at a slow simmer for 30 minutes (20 minutes if using chicken pieces).
- Add potatoes (though you may want to boil them separately), cook until the potatoes are done and the chicken meat very tender, another 20 to 25 minutes.
- If using whole chicken: remove it from the pot, allow to cool until it is safe to handle, and with your hands remove the meat from the bone. Put the meat back in the pot.
- Ladle into heated deep plates, pour in some heavy cream (make a swirl), and garnish with the parsley.