Now we are heading towards the winter months, the days are getting shorter and the nights are getting colder, our favourite comfort foods are beginning to make an appearance. There’s nothing better than a hot steaming bowl of something hearty to warm you up once you are out of the cold! Stews are one of my favourite winter-warmers as they are quick and easy to prepare, usually in one pot and you can do it the night before, for a slow cook the next day, to be ready as soon as the kids get home. This stew is gluten and dairy free and is a meal in its own right thanks to the addition of borlotti beans and plenty of potato. It can however, also be served with rice, dumplings or crusty bread, which will stretch it out and make it a truly frugal feast! We all love crispy chicken skin, so rather than throw it away (it’s no good in a stew) it makes a lovely crispy accompaniment to the dish. I always make a good amount of dishes like these, enough for all five of us plus several lunches for me and a few portions for the freezer!
- Splash rape-seed oil (or other cooking oil)
- 1 white onion, chopped
- Several cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 3 medium-large potatoes, chopped into approx 2cm cubes (choose firm potatoes that will keep their shape and not turn to mash)
- 2 large carrots, chopped into approx 1.5cm rounds
- 2 cans chopped tomatoes
- 1 small can tomato puree
- 2 tsp mixed dry herbs
- 1 pint chicken stock (cube is fine, use Knorr for gluten free)
- 12 chicken thighs, skin removed and set aside
- 1 can borlotti beans
- Preheat the oven to 150C
- In a large stewing pot with a lid, fry off the onions gently in the oil until translucent
- Add the garlic and continue to fry for a couple of minutes
- Add the potatoes, carrots, herbs, tinned tomatoes, tomato puree and stock
- Bring to a simmer and add the chicken ensuring all pieces are immersed in the liquid
- Put on the lid and place in the oven for two hours
- Stretch the chicken skins out over a wire rack and place into a large backing tray. You can add a sprinkle of salt or other herbs but we tend to keep them plain.
- Remove the stew from the oven and add the beans, stir
- Place back in the oven for a further hour along with the chicken skins, place these right at the bottom
- Today we are serving with rice but, there is everything in this dish to be a meal by itself!
Previous recipes: Quick Tuna & Olive Spaghetti, Easy Chicken & Bacon Risotto, Spaghetti & Mozzarella Meatballs, Gluten & Dairy Free Mini Fish Pies, Toad in the Hole with a Twist, Pop Chicken Nuggets, Chicken ‘Kinda’ Kiev Crunchy Salmon Fishcakes, The Best Bolognese, Quick Spinach and Watercress Soup, Chicken & Spinach Pasta Bake, Easy Bacon and Monkfish Risotto, Hake in a Cheesy Sauce, Roasted Vegetable Pasta Sauce, Chinese Salmon, Chorizo and veg pasta & Homemade fish (or chicken) fingers.
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