Thursday, February 11, 2010

One Pot Chicken and Winter Veggies

It's true that my modus operandi is not generally characterized by easy or efficient cooking styles. Of course, I don't dislike cooking this way, but I don't often go out of my way to make a recipe conform to these limitations. Food takes me however long it needs to take, and requires as many pots, knives, cutting boards, and heating elements as are necessary to get the job done right. Sometimes, the process is as long and meandering and unnecessary as this paragraph seems to be. But every once in a while, I come up with something that doesn't ask to be complicated by too many pots and pans. One Pot Chicken & Winter Veggies, which arose from some purposeless leftover cubed squash in the freezer, is one such recipe. So, enjoy the quick prep and easy clean-up this dish affords!

You might recognize bits and pieces of this recipe that were borrowed from a variety of established regional and ethnic stews and other popular dishes. You might even be inclined to call it Jambalaprikash Gumbisotto, or maybe not ...

One Pot Chicken & Winter Veggies
2 Tbsps. butter or Earth Balance buttery stick
2 Tbsps. flour (whole wheat, barley, teff, brown rice ... whatever you have will do)
1 Tbsp. safflower oil
1 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb. sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed
1 lb. boneless chicken, cubed
1 Tbsp. anchovy paste
salt & pepper, to taste
1 1/2 cups pearled barley
2 cups low sodium chicken stock
1 cup dry white wine
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
2 Tbsps. dried thyme
1 tsp. paprika

In a large, heavy pot or dutch oven, melt the butter. Whisk in the flour and cook over medium heat, stirring constantly, for 5 minutes, or until slightly darkened. Add the safflower oil, onion, and garlic, and cook until onions begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the sweet potatoes and squash, cooking for another minute. Add the chicken and cook for 5-7 minutes, until the chicken is cooked on the outside. Add the anchovy paste, salt, pepper, and barley, and cook for one minute, stirring until everything is well incorporated. Add the chicken stock, white wine, tomatoes, thyme, and paprika, stirring well.

Bring to a bubble over medium high heat. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, or until the barley is done but still toothy (al dente) and has absorbed most of the liquid. If additional liquid is needed, add 1/2 cup water at a time until desired effect is reached. Serve hot in bowls.

Serves 6.


Anonymous said...

You may want to reconsider using canned foods due to the fact that they are nearly all lined with BPA, a synthetic estrogen.

Canned foods that are highly acidic (like tomatoes) tend to have higher BPA content, though nearly all cans (food and beverage) are lined with BPA (and BPA is in many other places as well where it gets info our foods/beverages).

Many scientists are recommending that pregnant & breastfeeding women and children under 2 should not be consuming BPA. It does transfer thru breastmilk.

Lots of info on google about BPA.

Ilana Kriegsman said...

Thank you for your comment. We generally try to stay away from canned goods, but in the winter, it is a better option than buying unseasonal fresh products from halfway around the globe. Our BPA exposure is very minimal, so I feel safe in making these occasional exceptions. For those who are concerned, there are stewed tomato products available in glass jars for a higher price (the lids still have BPA, but the tomatoes aren't often touching the lids). One such brand is Bionaturae. Also, if you use canned beans, you can buy Eden brand beans, as they do not line their cans with BPA.