This chicken stew is one of our favorites. A whole chicken, cut up into serving pieces are simmered slowly in a deliciously flavored broth with vegetables. For this stew variation, the spices are influenced by the Mediterranean- nutmeg, turmeric, and cinnamon adds a depth of earthy yet warm flavors. The turmeric addsmors earthiness as well as color. Fresh thyme adds to the earthy flavor – fresh oregano can be substituted .
This is an excellent dish filled with layers of flavors. Starting with the process of lightly flouring and browning the chicken pieces in ghee. Off course the ghee adds a slight buttery flavor. Onions, garlic, thyme and the spices are then cooked in the same fat – absorbing the flavors of the chicken left behind. Tomato paste, fresh tomatoes, carrots, chickpeas and potatoes add another layer and depth of flavorful richness. The lightly browned chicken is then added back into the pan and chicken stock is added to create more flavor – when making a stew, enough liquid is added to submerge the meat. Cover the pan and slowly simmer until the chicken is fork tender and the stock has reduced to desired amount.
When serving this dish, I like to spoon it over a bed of cooked basmati brown rice and garnish with chopped scallions. I hope you will try this recipe and enjoy it as much as we do. Happy cooking.
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Chicken Stew | Mediterranean Spices
An easy and delicious stew chicken that's cooked slowly until fork tender – it's bursting of flavors from the fresh herbs and spices.
For the chicken:
- 4 – 5 pounds whole chicken cut up into serving portions (I used the giblets and the backbone can be reserved for making soup).
- 3 teaspoons salt adjust for your diet
- 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
- flour for dusting chicken I usually prepare one cup flour but actually use far less.
- 2 – 3 tablespoons ghee or clarified butter
For the Stew:
- 1 medium yellow onion diced
- 2 tablespoons fresh garlic finely minced
- 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
- 1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds
- 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 3 tomatoes seeds removed and chopped. I used tomatoes on the vine or plum tomatoes.
- 1/4 to 1/2 cup white wine (Optional)
- 2 medium carrots cleaned and diced.
- 15 ounces chickpeas (1 can. about 15 to 15.5 ounces) rinsed.
- 3 small russet potatoes washed and quartered. Peeled if preferred.
- 3/4 teaspoon salt adjust to your taste bud/diet
- 3 cups chicken stock use enough to submerge the chicken.
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- Optional: Chopped scallions for garnish.
Let's season and brown the chicken.
Season the chicken with salt and pepper
Dust the chicken, lightly, in flour – dusting off any excess.
Heat the ghee using medium heat.
Brown the chicken in batches until lightly golden. Takes about 2 minutes per side. Turn off the stove once done. Remove the chicken.
Note: Do not overcrowd the pan as this will prevent browning.
Let's cook the stew:
In the same fat the chicken was cooked in, add the onions and sauté until translucent – about two minutes. Use medium heat. A little brown around the edges is okay.
Note: If there is too much fat in the pan, discard some of it.
Add in the cumin and fennel seeds and cook 30 to 60 seconds until fragrant.
Add in the thyme and garlic. Stir and cook up to 1 minute until fragrant.
Add in the turmeric and nutmeg. Str and cook 30 seconds.
Add in tomato paste. Stir and cook about 1 to 2 minutes until lightly caramelized.
Add in chopped tomatoes. Mix and cook until tomatoes starts to break down. About 2 – 3 minutes.
Add in white wine, if using. Mix and cook until almost evaporated – about 1 minute.
Add in the diced carrots, chickpeas and potatoes. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt. Mix.
Add back the browned chicken and giblets if using.
Add in enough chicken stock to just about submerge the chicken. Taste and add salt if needed to your liking.
Add in bay leaves and cinnamon stick. Bring to a boil. Use high heat.
Coven pan. Reduce heat to low and allow to simmer until the chicken is fork tender and the broth has reduced to your desired amount.
Turn off the heat. And serve with your desired grain. I use brown rice. Garnish with scallions if desired. Enjoy.
Video tutorial available for Chicken Stew | Mediterranean Spices
Nutritional information will vary based on actual serving sizes.