This is definitely a comfort food dish. To me it’s like a warm crackling fire, comfy couch and a favorite blanket. I like to make this after a long cold day, après-ski, accompanied by a basic rice pilaf and crisp green salad with a light vinaigrette. Pair this dish with a Viognier, which has a lush, soft character and a bone-dry finish. The Viognier grape has a slightly higher alcohol content which perfectly compliments the rich sauce. As chefs, this is something we whip up for ourselves because it is quick and very rewarding.
Poulet à la Crème
- 4- lbs skinless chicken thighs with bones in (optional)
- 2 tbsp butter unsalted
- 2 tbsp oil
- 1/2 white onion julienned (I used red on this day, it's not that important)
- 3 stalks of celery chopped
- 1/3 leek thoroughly cleaned and thinly sliced
- 2 cloves finely minced garlic fresh
- 8-10 oz crimini mushrooms cleaned and sliced
- 2 tablespoon all purpose flour
- 1½ cups Viognier or other dry white wine
- 2½ cups chicken stock
- 1½ cups heavy cream
- salt and ground white pepper to taste
- For the Sachet - use a bit of cheesecloth tied up with butcher's twine and include the following: 5 peppercorns crushed; 3 sprigs thyme; 1 bay leaf
- Herb Garnish: 3 stems each of parsley chive, and tarragon, finely chopped
Being by preparing all cut vegetables.
Season the chicken with salt and pepper on both sides.
Heat up the pan with the 2 tbsp of oil over medium high heat.
Add the chicken and sear until browned on both sides, then remove and reserve.
Next, add onion, celery, leek and garlic (and some butter and oil if necessary), then saute vegetables until tender. Once complete, remove and reserve with the chicken.
Add mushrooms to the pan and cook until well browned.
Stir in the flour and mix for 1-2 minutes.
Deglaze with white wine.
Once the wine has almost cooked out, return the vegetables, chicken and add the cream along with the sachet of herbs. Bring back to a simmer and place a lid on top.
Cook the chicken until done, testing with a meat thermometer. The chicken should be around 170-180 degrees and very tender to the touch.
Remove the sachet of herbs and discard.
Add the remaining garnish herbs and serve over cooked white rice.