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NEW ORLEANS - Smothered Chicken

     
Smothered Chicken

This is a wonderful slow-cooked dish that epitomizes New Orleans – no-fuss, spicy, comforting and completely delicious. It contains the Holy Trinity – celery, onion, capsicum – a trademark of many Cajun and Creole dishes.

You will need:

4 chicken Marylands – that's the thigh and drum still joined together

¼ cup vegetable oil – any will do

2 tablespoons flour

1 medium onion, diced

1 green capsicum, diced

2 stalks of celery, diced

1 clove garlic, chopped

3 cups water (or enough to just cover the chicken)

2 bay leaves

½ tablespoon dried thyme (or 1 T fresh)

½ teaspoon each of black and white pepper

¼ teaspoon each of cayenne pepper and paprika

1 teaspoon salt

2 tablespoons chopped parsley

What to do:

Trim away any excess fat from the chicken and discard. If you're in a hurry slash the flesh through to the bone to aid cooking. Heat the oil in a large saucepan until quite hot. Brown the chicken well on one side then remove from the pan. Add the flour to the remaining oil and juices and cook for 3-4 minutes whilst this "roux" bubbles and browns. You want it to brown but not burn so keep stirring it as it cooks.

Add the celery, onions, capsicum and garlic and cook for a further 3 -4 minutes. Now add the chicken back into the saucepan with the remaining ingredients. Ensure that the water level comes to just covering the chicken. Smother (i.e put a lid on it!), turn the heat to low and simmer gently for 45minutes -1 hour or until the chicken is falling away from the bone.

Serves 4

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