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Chicken stew with potatoes and vegetables


CHICKEN AND VEGETABLE STEW   I enjoy crockpot cooking; its easy once the ingredients are assembled, added to the pot, and hours later the flavors rise in intensity, creating a fused, rich stew  especially pleasing on cold winter days. The stews’ aroma adds warmth and a comfortable feel throughout my house. Although technically a stew because of its big chunks of fowl and potatoes, plus pieces of vegetables, this succulent chicken dish  also belongs with soups, because of its abundant soupy texture .   Whatever its label, its moniker stamps delicious! And the tomato paste, often familiar in pasta and  Italian dishes, enhances the flavor, plus perks up the color to  deep tawny.

3 lbs. boneless and skinless chicken thighs

1/4 cup vegetable oil

salt and pepper

1 large onion, chopped

1 cup celery, chopped

1/3 head cabbage, chopped

4 carrots, chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 Tbsp.  tomato paste

1/2 tsp. thyme

4 1/2 cups chicken broth, divided

1/3 cup flour

4 medium red potatoes, cut in 1/2 inch pieces

2 bay leaves

4 scallion, chopped


In a large frying pan, heat the oil to medium high. Pat the chicken dry, sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Add the chicken to the frying pan and brown on both sides, 7-10 minutes. Remove the chicken to a plate. Add the celery, carrots, cabbage and onion, plus a bit more oil if needed. Sauté on medium for 7-10 minutes until the vegetables are soft and slightly golden. Add the garlic and cook for two minutes. Add the tomato paste, plus 1/2 cup of the chicken broth. Add the flour, and stir in. Fold a few times until all the vegetables are moist,  the tomato paste adheres to them and some of the liquid has evaporated. let the vegetables cool 5-10 minutes. In the crockpot add the chicken thighs, meaty side up. Add a layer of potatoes.  Atop the potatoes, add the cut up scallions. Lay out a large piece of aluminum foil.

Along one edge, but toward the middle of the foil, lay out a thick layer of the vegetable mixture, using it all. Fold the foil over the vegetables, first one end and then the other.  Fold in the sides too, securely crimping each end tightly. lay this big pocket on top of the scallions, tucking in each end so it fits well in the pot. Push down gently on the top. Cover, and cook 4-5 hours on low.  At the 3rd or near the 4th hour, check to see if the soup needs more water. Add 1/2 to 1 cup water or chicken stock. Then too, peel back the foil, toss it out, and spread the vegetables around the pot. Cover again, and cook until the potatoes are tender, and chicken is cooked through.

Once cooking is complete, remove the whole chicken pieces, and shred into bit size pieces of meat and return to the pot.  Reheat if necessary