The best chicken stew I ever tasted, period!
Recently, I was in Kohler, Wisconsin attending the Kohler Food and Wine Experience. The whole weekend was magical and I learned a ton and got to sample some great food. One of the highlights of that weekend was meeting Christopher, Jack and Bridget from America’s Test Kitchen.
Their session was focused on The Ultimate Comfort Foods, where we got to watch them make (and taste!) their Best Chicken Stew and Chewy Brownies from the newly revised edition of The Complete America’s Test Kitchen TV Show Cookbook. “This cookbook includes all 15 seasons (including 2015) of the hit TV show in a fabulous collection featuring more than 950 foolproof recipes and dozens of tips and techniques.”
This is 963 pages of awesomeness right here. I mean, check out the thickness here!
You guys, even if you don’t watch the TV show, you need this cookbook. I mean, there are 26 chapters filled with recipes that you know are delicious and solid.
This is what I love about America’s Test Kitchen the most: knowing that they test and test and test again (for EVERY single recipe). They show and tell you why certain things/techniques worked. They talk about the science behind everything. They come up with things and ingredients you never thought to use.
And there’s an entire chapter on SOUP. I love this cookbook. What I’ll be cooking next: Perfect Potstickers, Simple Pot Roast, Lighter Chicken and Dumplings, Slow Cooker Beer Braised Short Ribs, Beef Stroganoff, Hearty Lentil Soup, Stir-Fried Beef and Broccoli, Stir-Fried Asparagus with Shiitake Mushrooms, Southern Cornbread, and something I absolutely cannot wait to try: the Best Almond Cake!
Now, I can’t just show you photos of this FABULOUS Chicken Stew, which is rightly named “BEST Chicken Stew” for a reason. You guys, the richness in flavor in this stew is crazy delicious. When I sampled this in Kohler, I knew I would be making this in my kitchen for my family like immediately. Like, after being home for 3 days, I made this stew. It is that good.
What makes this chicken stew amazingly fabulous is the fact that you are searing chicken wings to provide rich chicken flavor and plenty of thickening gelatin, and then you gently simmer bite-size pieces of boneless chicken thighs for tender bites throughout the stew. To boost the meatiness, you will use a combination of bacon, soy sauce, and anchovy paste. Anchovy paste!!! Brilliant. Finally, you take full advantage of the concentrating effect of reduction by cooking down wine, broth, and aromatics at the start and simmering the stew uncovered during its stay in the oven.
The good people over at America’s Test Kitchen gave me permission to share this recipe with you all. So, seriously, you guys .. today is your lucky day. Make the Best Chicken Stew and be happy.
And buy this cookbook and know, without a doubt, that you will have more than 950 delicious, solid recipes that you will be making again and again in your kitchen. And if you don’t have your Thanksgiving menu set yet, buy this cookbook for inspiration, recipes and a Thanksgiving holiday menu you and your family will never forget.
Best Chicken Stew
- 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, halved crosswise and trimmed
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 3 slices bacon chopped
- 1 pound chicken wings halved at joint
- 1 onion chopped fine
- 1 celery rib minced
- 2 garlic cloves minced
- 2 teaspoons anchovy paste
- 1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
- 5 cups chicken broth
- 1 cup dry white wine plus extra for seasoning
- 1 tablespoon low sodium soy sauce
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter cut into 3 pieces
- 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 pound small red potatoes unpeeled, quartered
- 4 carrots peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Arrange chicken thighs on baking sheet and lightly season both sides with salt and pepper; cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
- Cook bacon in large Dutch oven over medium low heat, stirring occasionally, until fat renders and bacon browns, 6 to 8 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer bacon to medium bowl. Add chicken wings to pot, increase heat to medium, and cook until well browned on both sides, 10 to 12 minutes; transfer wings to bowl with bacon.
- Add onion, celery, garlic, anchovy paste, and thyme to fat in pot; cook, stirring occasionally, until dark fond forms on pan bottom, 2 to 4 minutes. Increase heat to high; stir in 1 cup broth, wine, and soy sauce, scraping up any browned bits; and bring to boil. Cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid evaporates and vegetables begin to sizzle again, 12 to 15 minutes.
- Add butter and stir to melt; sprinkle flour over vegetables and stir to combine. Gradually whisk in remaining 4 cups broth until smooth. Stir in wings and bacon, potatoes, and carrots; bring to simmer. Transfer to oven and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes, stirring once halfway through cooking.
- Remove pot from oven. Use wooden spoon to draw gravy up sides of pot and scrape browned fond into stew. Place over high heat, add chicken thighs*, and bring to simmer. Return pot to oven, uncovered, and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until chicken offers no resistance when poked with fork and vegetables are tender, about 45 minutes longer. (Stew can be refrigerated for up to 2 days.)
- Discard wings and season stew with up to 2 tablespoons extra wine. Season with salt and pepper to taste, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.
Published November 1, 2013. From Cook’s Illustrated. I received permission from America’s Test Kitchen to publish this Best Chicken Stew recipe here.
Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post in any way. I purchased this cookbook on my own and just wanted to share this fabulous cookbook with you all.