As Old Man Winter hangs on for dear life, something warming to nourish the soul is in order – Rustic Country Chicken with Olives, Potatoes & Leek. One of those recipes that uses one pot, looks humble & unassuming but tastes just how I think an exceptional chicken stew needs to taste – perfectly balanced with wine, rosemary & potatoes, sweetened by the carrots with the subtle yet distinctive flavor of leek . Served simply with some artisan bread & baby lettuce leaves, it’s currently my favorite meal.
She may not win first prize in a beauty contest but one mouthful & you’ll understand why I had to share this recipe with you. Firstly everything is cooked together in one pot. With a big kitchen renovation about to start in our house, this hold much appeal.
Secondly, as the chicken & veggies cook they meld to create such a distinct flavor I was transported to Italy sitting at an old farmhouse table. Truly.
Or freeze to have on-hand for those nights when you just can’t muster the energy to cook. Or you’re eating solo & take-out isn’t an option.
I don’t know about you but I’ve loved olives for as long as I can remember. Not the soapy tasting black olives in a can, no, not those. I’m talking about the olives you might find in a nice deli or olive bar. Such as these guys. Called ‘castelventrano’ olives, they’re buttery & slightly sweet with a subtle flavor not usually associated with olives. If you’ve never tried them I urge you to locate them. Serve them with some cheese & wine for a simple starter, cook with them, enjoy them. They’re wonderful. If you’re not lucky enough to find them, then use a decent green olive that’s not stuffed.
Rustic & humble, this is a recipe to share with family & friends & one I hope you’ll come back to time & time again like I do. I’m done with fussy food & spending days & subsequent countless hours preparing for a meal to serve guests. If age has taught me nothing, it’s taught me that simple is usually the best. And this recipe is proof.
PS. If, like me you prefer to make your own broth then you should try Slow Cooker Broth.
- 6 bone-in chicken thighs
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 leek
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons all purpose (plain) flour
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 2 springs of fresh rosemary
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 12 little new potatoes (baby potatoes)
- 12 small carrots, tops removed & peeled (peeling is optional)
- pinch of salt
- 1 teaspoon coarsely ground pepper
- 1/2 cup Castelvetrano olives (mild, buttery & sweet) or green olives of your choice
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
- Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C).
- Remove & discard the skin from chicken thighs. Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook the chicken in 2 batches for 5 minutes per side or until browned. Remove chicken from pot & set aside.
- Trim & discard the root end & tough top from leek, reserving the white & tender green parts. Thinly slice the leek & place in a fine metal sieve. Rinse under cold water to remove any dirt & give the sieve a good shake to get rid of any excess water. Carefully add the leek (if there’s residual water it will splatter) to the same pot. Cook, stirring, about 5 minutes or until softened. Add the garlic & cook for 1 minute until fragrant.
- Add flour & cook, stirring, for 30 seconds to cook the flour.
- Add the wine & give the pot a stir, scraping any bits off the bottom of the pot.
- Add chicken, rosemary, broth, potatoes, carrots, salt & pepper. Increase heat to high & bring to a boil.
- Cover & cook in the preheated oven for 30 minutes. Remove the lid & cook for 10 minutes. Stir in the olives. Return pot to oven & cook for 5 minutes or until chicken is cooked & vegetables are tender. Sprinkle with parsley. Serves 4 to 6.