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This dish may very well be the best chicken fricassee you've ever eaten.  It can be made very low fat or moderately low fat; either way it's a fantastic meal.  Despite the rather long ingredient list, it's really easy to prepare.  

Spicy Chicken Fricassee

1 fryer, cut up, OR 3 - 3 1/2 lbs. of favorite chicken parts (Note #1)
2 tablespoons olive oil  (Note # 2)
1 medium to large onion
1 medium carrot, scrubbed or scraped
1/2 red bell pepper, cut in thin strips
1 medium green bell pepper, cut in thin strips
1 medium zucchini
1 large stalk of celery
2 medium potatoes
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup broken salad olives
2/3 cups ketchup
2/3 C. white cooking wine, OR 2/3 C. chicken broth
plus 1 tsp. lemon juice
1 hot pepper, such as jalapeno (Note #3)
4 large garlic cloves
1 teaspoon dried oregano

1/2 teaspoon black pepper  or to taste
1/2 to 1 teaspoon
salt or salt substitute
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

1/3 cup honey

Wash the chicken and cut into serving size pieces.  Remove all visible fat (Note #1). 

Place the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet or chicken fryer.  Heat fairly hot.   Place chicken in the hot oil.  Cook until chicken is browned on all sides, turning occasionally.  Pan should be hot enough to brown the chicken without rendering too much liquid, but not so hot that it scorches it.

Remove chicken to a plate.  Drain off and discard the oil and fat, leaving the browned bits in the pan.  Return chicken to the pan over medium heat.   Cut the veggies as follows, scattering over the chicken:

Peel and cut the onion into wedges, as if you were making apple wedges, and add to pan.   Add the julienne bell pepper strips.  Cut the celery and carrot into thin diagonal slices and add.  Cut the zucchini into quarters lengthwise, cut into quarter-moon slices and add to pan.   Peel the potatoes and cut into quarters, adding  to chicken.

Sprinkle raisins and salad olives over all.   Mince the garlic and chop the hot pepper (Note #3) and add, with the ketchup and wine or broth.   Sprinkle with the remaining seasonings (except the honey). 

Cover tightly as soon as it comes to a boil.  Turn the heat very low and simmer until chicken is tender, perhaps about 20 to 25 minutes.    

Prepare some rice while you wait for the chicken to cook. 

As soon as chicken and potatoes are tender, remove the potatoes temporarily.   Drizzle the honey over the chicken.  With a spatula, tenderly turn the chicken to coat and mix.  Turn the fire up a little to boil the sauce down to about the thickness of gravy.  As soon as it thickens, add the potatoes, turning them gently to coat with sauce.  Remove from fire and serve over hot rice.    

Note #1:   For economy, you might wish to use 3 or 4 chicken legs, cut into drumsticks, thighs and backs.  For lowest calorie count, use chicken breasts, cut in half.   You could reduce the fat, cholesterol and calories by removing the skin.

Note #2:  If you are following a very low-fat diet and using skinless chicken breasts, you can use perhaps a teaspoon of olive oil in a non-stick pan.   Reduce the heat slightly.  If pan is too dry to brown the chicken breasts, use a little cooking spray to moisten.

Note #3:  Naturally the hot pepper is optional, but highly recommended.   Seed and finely chop a fresh jalapeno (or two if your pain level is high) or used some pickled pepper, minced.  Be careful, they can burn your skin. If you have a garlic press, you can use it for the hot pepper as well as the garlic.

The Sneaky Kitchen
Web Site by Bess W. Metcalf   Copyrightę April 1999 - 201

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