The Cafe Boulud recipe for this weekend is Chicken Grand-mere Francine. I actually made mine last week and daughter and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I had to make pintos for hubby and son-in-law since they didn’t think they’d like this. Son did eat some though, but said it wasn’t a favorite. I did have to do some improvising with this recipe. I couldn’t find celery root so I ended up using celery even though the taste isn’t the same. I thought I had bacon but didn’t, so used a little lard for the porky flavor. Fresh Thyme was another thing I thought I had but, no I didn’t, so I ended up using dried thyme. I only had three gold potatoes so I used a red one for the fourth. I used purple onion instead of shallots and a large white onion instead of the cipollini which I couldn’t find. I cut the onion up into big hunks about the size of tiny onions. I had hoped to substitute some jarred or frozen pearl onions, but my store didn’t have either. I had to make so many substitutions I hope the weekend in a French kitchen group doesn’t kick me out.
David sure had a good idea to serve with a crusty baguette spread with some of the garlic from the dish. The garlic bread was so good soaked in the juices from the dish. We all agreed I should have added even more of the whole baby cremini (I used baby bellas) mushrooms since they were outstanding. I used chicken thighs since we all enjoy dark meat. My garlic heads were huge so I just used one and half instead of two and there was plenty of garlic flavor to boost up this dish. I used some of my homemade chicken broth I always keep on hand in the fridge. I cooked mine in my large cast iron chicken fryer. Daughter and I were surprised how crisp the chicken skin was with all the broth and chicken juices. I did put the chicken back in last before putting in the oven so they stuck up out of the juices a bit so I guess that helped. I did have to cook mine about 45 minutes to get the chicken completely done. The thighs were on the larger side so I guess that was my problem. I did have four more thighs and more veggies than what’s in the picture. I divided the leftovers with my daughter and this was great reheated. The little green glass hen in the photo was part of my Mom’s glass chicken collection. She had them in all sizes and colors.
Mimi’s recipe for this weekend is Butternut Gratin and I’ve had my eye on this recipe for fall since I got my copy of A Kitchen in France. I was so happy to see this one come up in the rotation.
My daughter and I halved this and ate the whole thing for our supper. It was delicious. I did end up using Swiss cheese since my store didn’t have Comte Cheese. Also my stores chives looked awful, so I used some green onion blades instead. My squash took longer than the time said to get softened before adding to the gratin dish, no problem though since it all turned out great. I will definitely be making this one again. It’s the perfect fall dish.
Next weekend is Cooks choice so be sure to come back and see what I decide to make. As always if you’d like to join us at anytime cooking from either or both of these fantastic books check out all the details at: http://weekendinafrenchkitchen.com/