Slow Cooker Chicken Fricassee

Whether you enjoy cooking and don’t have a lot of time, or don’t enjoy it but still need to for your family,  most people share a common interest in eating great food.  My recipe, for Slow Cooker Chicken Fricassee, solves the problem.
A fricassee, which I think is just a fun word to say – is pronounced frick-a-sea (really), and is a classic French dish that is a cross between a saute and a stew.  It looks and tastes amazing, and super ‘fancy’, but it relies on humble ingredients and you make it all in one pot.  Boom!
This dish is simple to make, and it will truly amaze your family and friends – even yourself – at how great it tastes.

Ingredients
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • ½ tsp thyme
  • ½ tsp parsley
  • ½ tsp rosemary
  • ½ tsp sage
  • ¼ cup + 2 tbsp all-purpose flour (divided)
  • 1 whole chicken, cut up (if you substitute chicken pieces, you’ll need  8-10 pieces)
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil (The brand I use is Filippo Berio Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
  • 4 large carrots, sliced on the diagonal
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 1 lb sliced mushrooms (optional)
  • 1 cup chicken broth (if you don’t make your own, Swanson Chicken Broth works great)
  • ½ cup white wine (I used a 2012 Ruffino Lumina Pinot Grigio)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup sour cream (optional)

Here are my step by step instructions:

(Note:  Rinse chicken well and dry all pieces thoroughly with paper towels before placing into the bag with the seasonings  – it not only helps assure a more thorough coating of the seasoning mix, but it also reduces splattering when browning the chicken.)
 Step 1 – Mix the paprika, thyme, parsley, rosemary, sage, and ¼ cup all-purpose flour well in a gallon sized Ziploc bag.  Add the chicken to the  bag and shake well to coat thoroughly.
(Pictured below are the basic cast of characters.)
Ingredients
Step 2 –  In a large, heavy skillet (like the cast iron one shown below) heat a tablespoon each of butter and extra virgin olive oil over medium to high heat, and brown the chicken on each side.
pan with oil and butter2
Make sure your pan is well heated before adding the chicken to the pan.  This helps assure a quick sear, and will also browns the pieces in about 3 minutes on each side.  You’ll probably need to do two batches to cook all the chicken without over crowding the pan.  (Remember that you’re just trying to brown it, not cook it through – the actual cooking will be done in the slow cooker.)
Based on the level of golden browness you prefer, it should look about like this…
Browning chicken
Step 3 – Add the browned chicken to the slow cooker.
Loading the crockpot
Step 4 – Wisk together all the flour, broth, wine, salt, pepper, and minced garlic, and pour over the top of the contents of the slow cooker.
I do this by wisking the flour with just a couple tablespoons of broth or wine to start:  It will look like a paste at first (like in the below picture), but doing it this way, where you gradually wisk in more liquid once it’s smooth, avoid lumps (I hate lumps, so I avoid them!). Stirring the flour & broth
Step 5 – It’ll look about like this – pour the whole thing into the slower cooker over the vegetables and chicken.
Pouring broth
It’s ready to go – put the lid on,  set it to cook on low, and forget about it for the next 6-8 hours.
Start of cooking in crockpot2
Step 6 (optional) – For presentation, when it’s done cooking,  I like to remove everything in the slow cooker into a nice serving dish – so the chicken can assume it rightful place of honor on the top of the pile.  If you do this as well, you should end up with more than a cup of cooking liquid left in the slow cooker, which you can use just as it is, as a broth, or you can  make a sauce out of it.  I make a simple, delicious sauce by wisking it with cup (or so) of  sour cream.  You can then reserve the sauce off to the side, or pour over the top of the whole dish, whichever you prefer.
Chicken Fricassee is delicious serve all by itself, stew fashion, with a crusty loaf of bread on the side, or it can be served over white or brown rice, pasta, or even biscuits, depending on your preference.
After cooking
Enjoy!

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