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Poule au Pot (Poached Chicken) is a classic French dish and the inspiration for this recipe. It is a twist on chicken stew cooked in vegetable stock. Its origins are rich in French history. Poule au pot was established by King Henry IV of France as a “French national dish” in the 17th century. It was his favorite meal. He once declared that every French family should eat poule au pot, literally “chicken in a pot” every Sunday. The dish featured vegetables and herbs cooked down to create a stock to which a whole chicken is added.
My goal, as always, is to serve great-tasting food that isn’t complicated, fussy, or stressful to prepare. I simplified the recipe using boneless chicken thighs (or chicken breast), which I always have in my freezer. I didn’t fuss with an hour’s prep time to make a stock. Instead, I used a couple of cans of chicken broth and dry herbs from my pantry. I kept the veggies stress-free by sticking to the ones I always have in the fridge. The result is an easy-peasy (DELICIOUS) weeknight recipe that can be thrown together without advance planning. Bazinga, baby! Goal achieved. I still get excited every time something so easy turns out so good.
As an added benefit, this is a low-fat, low-calorie dish. If you are counting points (WW), this weighs in at 6 points. The points are from the potatoes. If you sub out the potatoes for cauliflower, you’re practically at nothing. My test tasters (otherwise known as my family) didn’t particularly care about that. They love this recipe because of its taste. The ground cloves are the secret ingredient that knocks the flavor profile out of the park. The perfectly tender chicken and vegetables can be served with or without the broth. I spoon a little broth over the top before seasoning. If you want, save the leftover broth and use it for cooking rice at a later time.
Treat yourself and your family like royalty with this ridiculously easy recipe.
Poached Chicken and VeggiesCourse: MainCuisine: AmericanDifficulty: Easy
French-inspired, easy chicken dinner is cooked in one pot with ingredients from your pantry and fridge. The ground cloves are the secret ingredient that knocks the flavor profile out of the park.
¾ teaspoon parsley
¾ teaspoon thyme
½ teaspoon whole black peppercorns
2 bay leaves
¼ teaspoon cloves
30-32 ounces low-sodium chicken broth (2 cans or one box)
2 lbs skinless, boneless chicken thighs or chicken breasts
4 ounces mushrooms, sliced
½ lb small red potatoes, quartered
1 cup baby carrots
4 stalks celery, cut into 1/2-inch slices
2 cloves of garlic, coarsely chopped
1/2 onion, sliced
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- In a large stock pot, add broth, herbs, and 4 cups water. Bring to a boil; reduce to gentle simmer.
- Add chicken. Add veggies. Simmer gently over medium heat for 30-40 minutes or until chicken is cooked through. Skim off fat as needed. Before serving remove bay leaves and, if desired, peppercorns. Season with salt, pepper, and additional parsley.
- Use your favorite vegetables! Asparagus, turnips, parsnips, pearl onions, cauliflower, and leaks have all been used.
- Substitute 4 sprigs of fresh herbs for the dried herbs.
- Make your own chicken broth with bouillon cubes.
- The left-over liquid (the vegetable stock) can be used to cook very flavorful rice.