Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Julia Child's Chicken Fricassee

Despite being a foodie and lover of chicken dishes, I have never made a fricassee. In fact, until I read Julia Child's detailed description in one of her cookbooks I wasn't too sure what a fricassee involved exactly (it's basically chicken in a mushroom cream sauce.)

I had picked up some Kalona chicken at the New Pi the other day and figured this would be a good starting point. The recipe itself was fairly straightforward - a little pan saute with butter and olive oil, then poaching in white wine and chicken broth. I added onions, mushrooms then half-and-half just as Julia suggested. Sadly, my chicken came out on the stringy side (but it was flavorful!) I'm not sure if this was due to my lack of chicken cooking talent (I can roast an entire chicken fairly well, but maybe fricassee takes more finesse?) or to the fact that Kalona chickens probably spend their days roaming the Iowan hillsides rather than cooped up in cramped quarters with the rest of their mass-produced brethren. My guess is that in my efforts to avoid any risk of Salmonella I probably over-cooked the meat. The sauce also had a few gliches. Julia claims one simply cooks the mushrooms a few minutes before stirring in the cream. This resulted in a very thin, but high volume cooking liquid that wasn't very saucy at all. I ended up simmering the sauce down to thicken it up (the end product was very good.)

The upside to this dish is that it reheats very nicely (unlike the shrimp pasta dish I had made the night before). The chicken flavor was intensified and the sauce was a bit thicker - perfect for a quick lunch (or in my case, a second dinner.) I recommend putting the sauce on some pasta (ravioli works really well!)



1 comment:

Sherry said...

this is making me HUNGRY!! YUM!i