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Chicken Waterzooi

Source: Burt Wolf's Travels and Traditions, Brussels
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Rating: 5   Reviews: 1 See Reviews
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Active Time:  15 Minutes
Total Time:  1 Hour 10 Minutes
  Makes 6 servings
4 tablespoons butter
2 medium finely chopped onions
4 leeks, white parts only, thoroughly washed and  sliced into 3-inch long pieces
One 4-pound whole chicken, giblets and fat removed from cavity
6 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1/8 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon saffron
1 bay leaf
Water as needed
4 large carrots, peeled
4 celery stalks, washed
4 medium red new potatoes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup heavy cream
2 cups loosely packed parsley leaves, washed
In a 6-quart soup pot over low heat, melt the butter. Add the onions and leeks, cover and stew gently for about 5 minutes or until softened but not golden.

Place the chicken, breast side up, over the onions and leeks. Add the chicken broth, thyme, saffron and bay leaf and enough water to cover the bird by three-quarters. Bring the liquid to a simmer, cover and simmer for 20 minutes, turning the bird once, or until the chicken is partially cooked.

While the chicken is cooking, peel and cut the carrots into 2-inch rounds. Cut the celery into 2-inch pieces. Peel and quarter the potatoes (keep them in cold water until needed so they do not discolor).

After the chicken has simmered for 20 minutes, add the carrots, celery, potatoes, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and pepper to taste and simmer for another 25 minutes or until the vegetables are very tender and the chicken is cooked through.

Remove the chicken from the pot to a platter and cool long enough so you can remove the skin without burning your fingers. As this is cooling, strain the broth into a large bowl, reserving the vegetables and discard the bay leaf. Return the broth to the pot, skim off excess fat and boil it down until 5 cups remain; season well with salt and pepper to taste.

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, remove and discard the skin. Remove as much of the cooked chicken as you can, in long thin strips. (Note: You can do the entire recipe up until this point a day in advance.) Mince the parsley.

When ready to eat, add the cream to the broth, along with the reserved vegetables and chicken strips. Simmer gently without boiling until the ingredients are reheated. Season with salt and pepper to taste and stir in the parsley; serve immediately.

NOTES: While this recipe is easy, it does take some time to prepare. Ideally, you would make it a day ahead and finish the recipe on the day of serving.

Recipe reprinted by permission of . All rights reserved.
Date Added: 01/01/2008
Nutrition Facts per Serving
Yield:   Makes 6 servings
Calories: 728
Fat. Total: 32g
Fiber: 5g
Carbohydrates, Total: 31g
Sodium: 477mg
% Cal. from Fat: 40%
Cholesterol: 287mg
Protein: 76g
Spotlight Recipe Review See all 1 reviews »

Rating: 5
by: Jeannette Reviewed: 01/23/2011
Added to my recipe file
This makes a very good rendition of Waterzooi as I remember having it in Belgium. Use good produce and an organic or free-range chicken for best flavor, as you can't hide them under a heavy sauce or spices in this dish. This is my new favorite comfort food!
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