Thursday, March 10, 2011

Haitian Chicken

I'm back!  Going home for my mom's wedding combined with Alex being in poor health has led to me not cooking.  I finally made a meal tonight, and the void that has been consuming me for the past week has been partially patched.  I need to make some more homemade Larabars before I'll be fully repaired.

Does anyone else think of Alicia Silverstone in Clueless when they read/hear the word Haitian?  Anyway, this recipe was really really good.  And easy!  I didn't have to buy ANYTHING for this meal besides the chicken, so if you have a well-stocked pantry/spice rack you probably won't need to buy anything anything either.  I actually bought a whole chicken for this meal.  How intimidating!  Quartering the chicken turned out to be a messy operation, and I'm pretty sure that my whole kitchen is now extremely contaminated since all that I had to clean it on hand was Windex.  Note for future self- buy a boning knife.

Aside from the gore and excessive fluids, working with a whole chicken was kind of fun.  I've  never actually had a chicken leg before, so tonight I finally got to find out what all the fuss is about (num num!!). 

I served this meal over a bed of spinach and "caulirice" (see note at bottom).  Alex and my amiga liked the broth so much that they thought that this made a better soup than served as a salad, and mixed the spinach and raw caulirice in with the chicken broth.  The flavor of this dish was novel to all of us and the chicken came out extremely tender, and was a hit with Al, my amiga Kelly, and me.  Rating 8/10.

Adapted from New York Cookbook

1 whole chicken- quartered
4 cups of chicken broth
1 tsp of white wine vinegar (substitute with lemon juice to keep it paleo)
1 onion- sliced
4 cloves of garlic- minced
1/2 tsp minced fresh chile OR 1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
1/2 tsp sea salt
6 whole cloves
1 tsp dried thyme
1 bay leaf
1 cup of broccoli florets
1 cup of cauliflower florets
1 cup diced carrots (I forgot add these because I always manage to leave something out, but it was still great!)

Combine everything except for the broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots into a large ovenproof casserole/Dutch oven.
Heat on the stove top over medium heat until boiling.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Cover the casserole, lower the heat, and simmer for 15 minutes.
Place the casserole in the oven and bake for 1 hour.
Stir in the vegetables, recover the casserole, and continue to bake for 20 minutes.
Adjust the salt and pepper to taste.
Serve over rice or caulirice, OR serve in a bowl with plenty of the chicken broth.

Alex told me about using cauliflower as a substitute for rice.  Not only is this healthier for you, but it is paleo-friendly!  Also- you don't need to time the rice so it comes out at the same time as your meal.  Double score.

1 head of cauliflower

Break the cauliflower into florets.
Fit a food processor with the grating blade.
Drop the cauliflower into the feed tube and press down with the feed tube presser-downer.
1 head of lettuce should provide enough "caulirice" for 4-6 people.

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