Jacques Pépin first learned this recipe from his mother when he started working in her restaurant at six years old. It’s easy to put together and gets better every time you reheat it (if there are ever leftovers).
Jardiniere is French for “gardener,” so the vegetables change according to what’s in season. We stick to the basics here, but use your creativity and add whatever looks good at the market. When cooking the chicken, the pan should be wide enough to hold the pieces in a single layer. You want them to have enough room to sear until golden brown.
Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour and 10 minutes
- 5 ounces thick-cut bacon, cut into ¼-inch batons
- 1 tablespoon canola oil
- 4 chicken legs (about 2¼ pounds)—skins removed, drumstick and thighs separated, patted dry
- Kosher salt, to taste
- 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ¾ cup dry white wine
- 1½ cups water
- ½ pound baby red potatoes
- 8 pearl onions, peeled
- 3 large carrots, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 2 garlic cloves, smashed and finely minced
- 5 thyme sprigs
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- ¼ pound cremini mushrooms, halved or quartered if large
- 1 cup frozen baby peas, thawed
- 2 tablespoons roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
- Crusty bread, for serving
1. In a large heavy-bottomed saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the bacon and oil over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the fat renders and the bacon is crisp, 8 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate. Set aside.
2. Add the chicken legs to the pot, increase the heat to medium high and season with salt. Cook the chicken, turning occasionally, until brown on all sides, 10 to 12 minutes. Sprinkle with the flour and stir to distribute evenly, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the wine and reduce by half, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the water, potatoes, pearl onions, carrots, garlic, thyme and reserved bacon. Season with more salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium, cover and cook until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender, 20 to 25 minutes. Add the mushrooms, cover and cook for 5 more minutes. Stir in the peas and cook for another 2 minutes to heat through. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
3. To serve, garnish the stew with parsley and serve with crusty bread on the side.
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