Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Pierre Franey's Poached Chicken

Chicken's a nice, forgiving meat. If it's overcooked a little bit, it doesn't really harm it, whereas if beef is overcooked, kiss your delicious dinner goodbye. There are also countless ways to cook chicken, and because it's mild flavored, it can become just about anything. Really. So, yesterday I forgot to hunt up a meat idea in the freezer. So I turned to chicken pieces, which I thawed just a bit for 5 minutes in the microwave. While the original recipe called for a whole chicken, cut into pieces, this still came out great. True to my children's traditions, this has now been dubbed "Shreddy Chicken". Their names are nothing if not exactly descriptive - not poetic, but descriptive. So, without further ado, here's my adaptation of Pierre Franey's


3 pounds chicken pieces, with or without bones
6 cups water
2 carrots, cut into chunks
1 onion, cut in eighths
2 ribs celery, cut into chunks

6 peppercorns
4 cloves
1/2 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp salt

1-1/2 cups rice

1/2 cup heavy cream

2 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup lemon juice

Put everything except the rice in a stockpot. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is done. Put the rice in another pot, and strain 3 cups of the chicken broth out of the chicken pot. Add it to the chick
en with 1 tsp salt, and cook, covered, 20 minutes, until done. 5 minutes before the rice is done, add some chopped chives, if desired. As the rice is cooking, whisk the cream with the cornstarch, and stir into the chicken and broth in the first pot. If necessary, rinse the mixing cup with a tiny bit of water and add it to the chicken broth, to get all of the cream and cornstarch mixed together. Continue to simmer until the rice is done, by which time the sauce will have thickened. 5 minutes before the rice is done, add the lemon juice to the chicken broth, and serve over the rice.

I served this with asparagus sauteed in butter and fresh ground pepper. No one left anything for poor Thor, so I had to mix bread with a little bit of gravy. Our furry children must have human food, too, or they feel they've not been fed. Remind me to tell you some time about our cat named Graceful who loved spaghetti and green beans....


Unknown said...

Well there are people who say that if you feed the fur kids people food it will shorten their lifespan - but I'm not one of them. You know when you trim the asperagus? I feed those ends to the tall hounds - they love them.

Your chicken looks good. We had soup for dinner last night. g

Paula said...

I love the name "Shreddy Chicken"! Poached chicken sounds so plain in comparison, and this recipe is anything but plain! I just love chicken paired with rice, and that yummy sauce/gravy sounds so good, especially with the addition of lemon. You know I eat your lemon rice all the time, now. I suspect this will become a repeat dish, too! By the way, my grandma and grandpa fed their beagle all table scraps which was of course all home made/grown. She even saved any leftover coffee for him if you can believe that, and that dog lived over 18 years in perfect health!

Anonymous said...

Inquiring minds want to know who this Pierre Franey is:) This looks like a great comfort food.

Anonymous said...

Okay the kids named it perfectly, leave it to boys. It sounds like the perfect save from the freezer.

Anonymous said...

yum's too bad we're just serving breakfast here :)
but good fixings for after the guests leave
thanx! :)


Jan said...

I used to have a cat that loved cheese and onion chips.

This looks like a great "off the cuff" dinner.

pam said...

That looks so warm and comforting.