Cooking like Julia > Julia Child Recipes > Poultry > Old-fashioned Chicken Fricassee
Old-fashioned Chicken Fricassee + Stewed Mushrooms
Mastering the Art of French Cooking | Julia Child
June 14, 2021 | Laura Bullock | This post may contain affiliate links.
- Fricassée de Poulet à l'Ancienne [Old-fashioned Chicken Fricassee with Wine-flavored Cream Sauce, Onions, and Mushrooms], p. 258 - Champignons à Blanc [Stewed Mushrooms], p. 511
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BUTTER COUNT & COST
Butter Count: +9 TB
Cost: $16.92 [~$3.38 per serving]
See the total count here!
CHICKEN FRICASSEE IS A LENGTHY PROCESS
I can't even remember the last chicken recipe I made from Julia's cookbook.. It's been awhile. I'll be honest- I've been dreading this recipe. There's soo many steps. Between cooking, moving my camera around to video it all, moving my lights around, and taking pictures of each step, I was exhausted once I finally was able to sit down and enjoy it. This isn't a recipe you pull out at 6pm on a weeknight to make for supper really quick.
LET'S RATE OLD-FASHIONED CHICKEN FRICASSEE
LAURA'S RATING: 7
BRIAN'S RATING: 8
This chicken dish is really good, but at the end of the day, I'm not sure it was worth all the steps involved. Maybe if the onions and mushrooms could just be thrown into the pot with the chicken instead of cooked by themselves, it would help speed up the process some. I think how tired I was when I was eating this dish and the amount of dirty dishes in my sink factored into my rating a little bit.
I wish I would've gotten the chicken a little bit crispier during the sauteing part. Besides that, the onions and mushrooms were absolutely delicious, and I could have just eaten the sauce with a spoon by itself.
What is chicken fricassee?
Chicken fricassee is a classic French dish. According to Julia Child, chicken fricassee is somewhere between a sauté and a stew. When you sauté chicken, no liquid is used. When you're making a stew, the meat is cooked in the liquid from the beginning. When making a fricassee, the chicken is sautéed in butter and oil first then the liquid is added. The simmering liquid is then boiled down and used to make a sauce. The famous coq au vin is also a fricassee.
Is this chicken fricassee recipe difficult to make?
I wouldn't say it was difficult. It did, however, take some time to execute. There's many steps involved including the initial sautéing, the simmering, braising the onions, stewing the mushrooms, making the egg yolk and cream sauce, and finally reheating and serving.
What do you serve with chicken fricassee?
Julia suggests serving with rice, risotto, or buttered noodles. She also mentions buttered peas and asparagus tips. I served it with plain white rice which worked really well with the dish. It reminded me of the delicious chicken & rice casserole that my mom makes.
For this recipe:
HOW TO COOK CHICKEN FRICASSEE
First, an onion, celery stalk, and carrot are slowly cooked in butter for about 5 minutes in a Dutch oven. You want them to be tender but NOT browned. The heat is then raised and the chicken pieces are added cooking for 4 minutes and turning the pieces every minute.
The heat is turned backed down, the Dutch oven covered, and everything is cooked slowly for an addition 10 minutes, turning once at the halfway mark.
Now some salt, white pepper, and flour are sprinkled onto the chicken pieces. The Dutch oven is covered, and it continues cooking for 4 more minutes, turning once.
The Dutch oven is taken off the heat and boiling chicken stock, dry white vermouth, and an herb bouquet (parsley, bay leaf, and thyme) are added. Now it all simmers slowly for 25-30 minutes. While the chicken is simmering, I started working on the onions and mushrooms.
The onions are simmered with chicken broth, butter, salt, pepper, and an herb bouquet for about 50 minutes. The onions should still be able to hold together but not color. I decided to not count the onions as a separate recipe since they can be served as is. I'll be making them as a side soon for an upcoming meal.
The mushrooms are rapidly boiled in water, salt, lemon juice, and butter for 5 minutes. Since this mushroom recipe was made to be put into white sauces and to be used as garnitures, I'm counting as a recipe!
Now the mushroom and onion cooking juices are added into the Dutch oven with the chicken. The fat is skimmed off the top, and it is all boiled down quickly. Since we added flour earlier, the sauce will thicken up nicely. Just be patient! It took quite awhile for it to get thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Time to finish making the sauce! Egg yolks and cream are whipped together. The thickened cooking liquid is beaten in a spoonful at a time to the egg and cream mixture. Be careful not to scramble your eggs! Once the eggs are tempered, the rest of the hot cooking liquid can be added in a small stream. It is all now put back on the heat and boiled for one minute, stirring the whole time.
Salt, pepper, lemon juice, and nutmeg are added to the sauce, and it is forced through a fine sieve. My husband always hates how the carros and onions are strained out. They are very delicious!
The chicken, mushrooms, onions, and sauce are added back into the Dutch oven. At this point, everything can sit out uncovered until ready to eat. When ready to serve, the Dutch oven is put back onto the heat, covered, and slowly simmered for 5 minutes until heated through, basting frequently. Now it's removed from the heat, enrichment butter is added (yum!), and the chicken is decorated with parsley sprigs! Julia suggests serving Chicken Fricassee with rice or noodles!
Whew! That's a lot. I can't rest yet though. I'll be making this dish 3 more times to try all the different sauces!
YOU MAY ALSO LIKE
• Julia Child's Sautéed Chicken
• Julia Child's Roast Chicken
• Julia Child's Chicken Sautèed with Herbs and Garlic; Egg Yolk and Butter Sauce
You can find these recipes and all the other Julia Child recipes I make in Mastering the Art of French Cooking.
Check out my Recipe Checklist to see a list of all my completed and pending recipes from Mastering the Art of French Cooking!
June 14, 2021 by Laura Bullock