Cajun Chicken Stew

Ingredients:

2 lb chicken thighs (either bone in or not as you prefer)
1 T olive oil
3 T Cajun seasoning mix
fresh cracked black pepper
1 cup prepared roux: 1/2 cup butter or oil to 1/2 cup flour
1 medium onion, chopped
1 green bell pepper, deseeded and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 cups chicken stock, unsalted
3 t garlic, chopped
fresh cracked pepper to taste
2 T parsley, chopped
Optional: one head of whole roasted garlic cloves

Spoon Mage™ Note:

This aromatic recipe was modified from my Cajun friend Aline’s family recipe. If you have not tried anything Cajun, this is a terrific place to experience the goodness. It uses the Holy Trinity of “seasonings” for Cajun food – sauteed onion, green bell pepper, and celery. Enjoy.

Directions:

Season the chicken thighs with a couple teaspoons of the Cajun seasoning and cracked pepper. Place in a baking pan that has been sprayed with your favorite cooking oil. Roast in a 350 oven for 30-45 minutes until the chicken begins to brown. It does not need to completely cook.

While the chicken cooks, make a roux. Melt 1/2 cup butter over medium high heat. When the butter is bubbly, add 1/2 cup all-purpose flour and stir to incorporate. Stir constantly for about 10 minutes or so until the roux turns a beautiful caramel color.

Prep the veggies. Sauté the onions, bell pepper, and celery in the olive oil in a medium to large pot.

Add the garlic, a bit more black pepper, the cooked chicken (leave whole), the stock, any defatted chicken roasting pan juices. Stir well. Add the roux, stir, and simmer covered for 1 hour. Stir occasionally.

If you used bone in or skin on chicken, remove the meat to a platter after 20 minutes of simmering. Separate the meat from the bones and skin. Return the meat and any accumulated juices to the pot. Discard the bones and skin. Continue to simmer 40 minutes.

Taste and adjust the seasonings to suit you. I do not add additional salt, but you might want to consider doing so. A few shakes of Tabasco sauce are terrific as is more garlic.

Excellently and mindfully served with a sprinkling of parsley, brown rice, and a side of tender carrots and peas.

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