Fall Chicken Cacciatore
The Ultimate Chicken Stew with Fall Vegetables, Apple Brandy and Tarragon. Perfect for a Rosh Hashanah Holiday Meal – and Reheats Well! Gluten- free.
Wash and dry chicken. Rub in salt and pepper, set aside, or leave overnight in a ziplock bag. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
Heat 1 T. of oil in a large skillet (I use a seasoned cast iron.) Set heat medium- high and add half of the chicken browning on all sides, about 6 -8 minutes.
Remove chicken to a large platter, add remaining chicken and repeat. Scrape any brown bits from the pan, add to chicken.
Sprinkle the chicken with 1 T. of salt-free seasoning, rub in.
Wipe pan clean, add 1 T. oil and raise heat to high. Add the mushrooms, and sauté, stirring until they are a deep golden color, about 3 minutes.
Remove them to a large clean plate.
Add 1 T. oil to pan with the butternut squash, cook over medium-high heat until golden, stirring, about 5 minutes.
Add them to the plate with the mushrooms.
Add 1 T. oil to the pan with the parsnips, celery root, shallots and garlic. Sauté over low heat until softened, and just starting to color a bit.
Add 2 T. flour, one teaspoon salt-free seasoning – stir one minute. Add the calvados, raise heat to high, then add the broth and apple cider.
Stir well with a whisk, and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and cook for 5 minutes to slightly reduce and thicken.
Add chicken to a large, heavy oven baking dish (non aluminum). 11″ x 15″. Pour the sauce over, it should reach half way up to the height of the chicken.
(Reserve the butternut squash and mushrooms, will add later.)
Tuck the tarragon sprigs into the sauce and cover tightly with heavy foil.
Braise for 45 minutes, remove from oven – add the butternut squash and mushrooms. Core the pear, and cut into 1/3″ long slices. Add them to the pan as well.
Cover and bake another 45 minutes until the chicken is tender, and falls off the bone.
Cool a bit, the sauce will thicken as it stands. Taste for salt, add if necessary (will depend on the saltiness of the broth.)
For a pungent taste, and some more acidity, add a teaspoon to two of apple cider vinegar, or another tablespoon of calvados.
Serve over your favorite grain or pasta, and garnish with fresh tarragon leaves.
*A great spice blend: Karen’s Peruvian Spice Blend (has a little salt)
Use your favorite blend, as spicy as you like.