Monday, November 21, 2011

Trinidadian Chicken Stew

So this is a recipe I've been making for over a year now. I saw this recipe on my favorite cooking show, Giada at Home. Hubby loves himself some chicken and when I saw Giada make a stew that was in one pot and included the protein, veggie and starch, I was all on it! It appeared pretty simple to make, by my only qualm was that she threw in a can of plum tomatoes. Egads! How can I throw tomatoes into the stew and except Hubby to consume it? So I was speaking with my mother on the phone about the tomato situation and she recommended making a tomato broth, basically boiling tomatoes in water, then putting it through a sieve and throwing that into the stew. Genius! This was perfect because the recipe calls for tomatoes and a cup of water, I'll just combine and smush the tomatoes and there you go!

So I made the recipe with my own tomato broth and it came out so good! I did make some variations to the recipe, i.e. the tomato broth, marinading the chicken with all the herbs rather throwing it into the stew and simmering the stew much longer than recommended so the potatoes are cooked to the point that they are falling apart so it is similar to a thick stew. So I should probably knock off the word Trinidadian from the recipe because according to the reviews under Giada's recipe many people have stated that it is far from authentic Trinidadian stew, and with my edits I'm sure it detracts even more from authenticity. So I shall call this Chicken Stew.

The results were a success. Both Hubby and Bambino love this stew. I like that the chicken is cooked so long that it easily shreds apart, making it easy to break apart for Bambino to eat. I make this dish pretty often, a heavy rotation dish, and will continue to keep making it!

Click here for the original recipe.

1/8 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut in pieces
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger
salt and pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley + a couple of sprigs
2 tablespoons freshly chopped thyme leaves
2 bay leaves
5 roma tomatoes
approximately 2 cups water
1 onion, chopped in half
3 cloves of garlic
3 carrots, peeled and chopped
5 medium sized Russett potatoes, peeled and chopped (Recipe calls for 3 potatoes, but I like my stew extra potato-y)

1. Marinade chicken with ginger, salt, pepper, parsley and thyme. Place in fridge over night.

2. In a large pot place tomatoes, onion, garlic, bay leaves and a couple sprigs of parsley. Add approximately 2 cups water (enough water to just barely cover the tomatoes, the tomatoes will probably float on the water) Bring to a rolling boil and then simmer for about 30 minutes. Take a spoon and smash the tomatoes against the side once they are cooked. Simmer another ten minutes. Once cooled, place tomato mixture through a sieve and and bring out the broth, reserve to the side.

3. In the same pot you made the tomato broth, heat oil on medium high heat. Add brown sugar and cook, stirring occasionally until dark, about 2 to 3 minutes.

4. Add in the chicken pieces and saute until brown on all sides. Add in carrots and potatoes and saute with chicken for about 2-3 minutes. Add in broth. Bring to a boil. Cover and simmer for a good 1 1/2 hours- 2 hours, depending on how much you like the potatoes cooked. Add salt and pepper based on taste.

5. Cool and serve!

Amateur Cooking Difficulty Scale: 5
There are many different steps to this recipe and making the tomato broth takes a little more time, but while there are more steps each step really doesn't take too long to make. This really is a great one pot meal that's perfect for cold weather since it's warm and hearty!

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