Chicken Stew with Rosemary and Bacon
2 slices thick-cut bacon, minced
1 3 to 4-pound chicken, skinned and cut into 10 pieces
(cut breasts in half and reserve liver)
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tbl high-quality olive oil
1 large onion, peeled and sliced
1 chicken liver, minced
2 bay leaves
1 tsp fresh rosemary, minced
4 whole cloves
1 tbl tomato paste
2/3 cup white wine
1 3/4 cup chicken broth, homemade preferred
1/2 tsp salt or to taste
1. Heat a large, heavy Dutch oven (cast-iron preferred) over medium/high heat. When hot, add the bacon and cook until brown and crisp, stirring frequently. Drain on paper towels and reserve. Season the chicken with salt and pepper.
Pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil. When hot, add the chicken pieces and brown in batches if necessary until deeply browned on all sides. (Use lots of heat and render as much of the fat in the skin as possible.) Remove and set aside.
2. Pour off fat and add 2 tablespoons olive oil. When hot, add the onion, chicken liver, bay leaves, rosemary and cloves, and cook about 7 to 8 minutes or until the onion is
soft and translucent. Add the chicken and bacon pieces back to the skillet.
Add the tomato paste and half of the wine and stir to coat the chicken. Add the rest of the wine and the broth and scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.
Simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Check the chicken for doneness. If not cooked, simmer another 5 minutes or so. Add salt and pepper to taste and check seasonings. Remove chicken to a bowl and cover to keep warm. (At this point, you can degrease the sauce if you like by straining it into a fat separator or by letting it sit for a few minutes
In a glass measuring cup and spooning off the fat that rises to the top.)
Simmer sauce another 8 to 10 minutes or until thickened. Remove the bay leaves and cloves. Add back the chicken pieces, heat through, and serve at once.
Serves 4 to 6.
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