Chicken Fricassee is a very economical and tasty dish that your family will love. It is a completely satisfying and delicious main dish that’s great for cool winter nights, but it’s also good to make in the summer so you don’t have to run the oven. The chicken is browned and then cooked slowly on top of the stove with herbs until it plumps out with delicious flavors. Then chive dumplings are added right before the chicken is finished.
It is one of the first recipes I started making as a young newlywed and is straight out of the Betty Crocker cookbook. Though I have followed the cookbook in a lot of ways for this recipe, I would make these recommendations: While using a whole cut-up chicken gives a much richer flavor, it is probably easier and not quite as messy to eat if you use boneless, skinless, chicken breasts. I would also add the following ingredients to the dumplings: 1 tsp. paprika, 1/2 tsp. dill weed, and 1 tbsp. parsley, to give them a little more flavor.
Here’s what it looks like in the cast iron skillet. It’s not all that difficult to make and really has yummy flavors. I usually use a regular chicken which decreases the cooking time tremendously–rather than a stewing hen. If you’re looking for something different with great taste, this may be the recipe for you.
Here’s a plate of the chicken fricassee with gravy and chive dumplings and a side of Italian Zucchini. It is unfortunate that Betty Crocker.com doesn’t carry this delicious recipe on their website. I love this dish!
Here’s what I did.
Measure out a cup of flour on a large plate.
These are the seasonings that will be added.
Add salt, pepper, and paprika.
Stir seasonings into the flour.
Add oil into the bottom of large cast iron skillet. The recipe calls for Crisco, but I am trying to eliminate hydrogenated fats as much as possible. Here I used canola oil.
Swish the oil around in the skillet until it is completely covered.
Dredge chicken pieces in flour mixture. In keeping with this recipe I used a whole chicken cut-up that was not skinned. It does provide a much richer broth and gravy having the bones and skin in the recipe, but it is easier to eat if you make this with boneless, skinless chicken breasts instead.
Dredge all of the chicken pieces in flour mixture.
Place chicken pieces in skillet.
You will need a very large skillet in order to cram all of the chicken pieces in it.
Once chicken browns on one side use tongs to turn the chicken pieces over on the other side.
Here I am turning the piece over.
Here all the pieces have been turned over. Don’t overcook them so that the skin burns. Just brown them about 5 minutes on each side.
For the fricassee broth dice up about 1/2 of an onion
I used rosemary, 2 sage leaves, and thyme in the fricassee broth to give it flavor.
Here’s what the chicken looked like after I browned it.
There was not enough oil left in the pan to save to make the gravy later.
I moved the sludge over to the side of the pan.
Add water to skillet. I ended up adding 2 cups of water rather than only 1.
Add onions to water in skillet.
I added a couple of sage leaves, several sticks of rosemary and thyme leaves.
Cover the broth with the chicken.
Here’s what that looks like.
Cover skillet with lid and cook on a medium heat for approximately 45 minutes or until chicken tests done.
This is a picture of the chicken after it’s been simmering in the broth for about 30 minutes.
Mix up dumpling batter. I used a white whole wheat flour. The recipe calls for regular all purpose flour and because that is not as heavy (it’s overly milled and refined) it does make a lighter fluffier dumpling.
These are the ingredients you will need.
Add baking powder, salt and pepper to flour. I would add an additional teaspoon of paprika, 1/2 tsp. of dill weed and a tablespoon of parsley to give the dumplings a little more flavor.
Stir seasonings into flour.
Stir chives into batter.
Cut butter into flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs.
Here’s what that looks like.
Once all the butter is worked in, add milk.
Stir ingredients together.
Because the flour is so much denser I should have added more milk to get this a lighter consistency.
I pierced the chicken breasts with a fork to see if the juices would run clear. If they do the chicken is done. If blood comes out the chicken is not cooked. You can also use a meat thermometer.
Remove chicken to platter temporarily.
This is the broth from the pan.
Pour the broth off into a large measuring cup.
Add oil to skillet.
I used up the leftover seasoned flour from dredging the meat earlier.
I put it twice as much as the recipe calls for because I want a thicker gravy. It is a little on the dry side.
Work all of the broth back into the flour paste a little at a time. Start with about a 1/4 cup. Work that in and repeat. Continue repeating until all of the broth is added into the sauce.
Here only a little bit of the broth has been added.
Continue stirring and adding more broth.
Continue adding more broth and stir.
This is what it looks like after I’ve added about 2 1/2 cups broth back into the gravy.
I added about 1 1/4 cups of milk.
This is what the gravy looks like now.
Place the chicken back into the gravy. (I did remove the sage leaves when I added the broth to the gravy mix).
Scoot all the meat to one side of the pan.
I shaped the dumplings rather than just dropping them from the dough. Add to skillet.
Cook dumplings 10 minutes uncovered, and 20-30 minutes covered.
Here I’ve covered them to cook thoroughly.
Here’s a peek at them when they were finished.
Here’s what the chicken fricassee and dumplings looks like on the plate.
Here’s a close up look.
Here’s the recipe.
CHICKEN FRICASSEE WITH DUMPLINGS
(From the Betty Crocker Cookbook, 1972 edition)
4 ½-5 lb. stewing chicken, cut up (I use a regular 2-3 lb. whole chicken cut-up or you can use about 6 boneless, skinless chicken breasts)
1 cup flour
2 tsp. salt
¼ tsp. pepper
2 tsp. paprika
Shortening or salad oil for frying (I used canola oil)
1 cup water (I used 2 cups)
3 tbsp. flour
Milk (I used 1 1/4 cups)
chopped onion, lemon juice, rosemary or thyme leaves, if desired for richer flavor (see my measurements above)
Mix 1 cup flour, salt, pepper and paprika. Coat chicken with flour mixture. Heat thin layer of shortening (or oil) in large skillet; brown chicken on all sides. Drain off fat; reserve. To skillet, add water and, if desired, chopped onion, lemon juice or herbs, such as rosemary or thyme leaves. Cover tightly; cook chicken slowly 2 ½ to 3 ½ hours or until fork-tender, adding water if necessary. (Regular chickens only take about 45 minutes to an hour). Remove chicken to warm platter; keep warm. Pour off liquid in skillet; reserve. To make gravy, heat 3 tbsp. reserved fat in skillet. Blend in 3 tbsp. flour. (I used more). Cook over low heat, stirring until mixture is smooth and bubbly. Remove from heat. Add enough milk to reserved liquid to measure 3 cups; pour into skillet. Heat to boiling, stirring constantly. Boil and stir 1 minute. Return chicken to gravy. Prepare dough for Dumplings; drop by spoonfuls onto hot chicken. Cook uncovered 10 minutes; cover and cook 20 minutes longer.
NOTE: To fricassee a broiler-fryer chicken, select 3-4 lb. broiler-fryer and cook slowly 45 minutes or until fork-tender instead of 2 ½ to 3 ½ hours.
1 ½ cups flour (I used a white berry whole wheat flour)
2 tsp. baking powder
¾ tsp. salt
3 tbsp. shortening (I used butter)
¾ cup milk
3 tbsp. snipped chives
(1 tbsp. parsley, 1 tsp. paprika, 1/2 tsp. dill weed added for additional flavor)
Measure flour, baking powder and salt into bowl. Add chives. Add parsley, paprika, and dill weed. Cut in shortening thoroughly until mixture looks like meal. Stir in milk.
NOTE: you may consider adding other seasonings to the dumpling mix. At the very least it can use some pepper, but I think it would be good with dill, thyme, marjoram or any number of other herbs.
Here’s a plate of this delicious recipe with a side of Italian Zucchini.
Here’s a bite with gravy on it.
Here’s a close up look at the inside of the chive dumplings.
Another close up look at the meat.
Here’s a plate for you!