Dianne says: “Tonight is a no-fluff kind of story in that there’s really no explanation needed. It is as you see it – a gather and feast, help yourself supper. What I really love about this creamy chicken and leek casserole is the simplicity of ingredients. Nothing wild or exotic on the list that requires a Food Garmin to track down. Just a couple of the usual suspects that can easily find their way into your shopping trolley – Chicken thighs, leeks, mushrooms, a bottle of white, cream and parsley. Friends forever!
I use skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs as brown meat is so much more flavoursome than white. Use whichever you prefer, the choice is yours. Remember though to reduce the cooking time by at least 10-15 minutes if using the fillets to prevent drying out. Leeks and shallots impart a subtle sweetness to the sauce and partner like champions with mushrooms and chicken. For a herby freshness, adorn with handfuls of flat leaf parsley. Serve with steamed green beans and tender-stem broccoli for an irresistible Banting supper or wild rice, roast butternut and sweet potatoes for the rest of us. And…..we’re done!”
Chicken & Leek Casserole
olive oil, for cooking
8 chicken thighs, (with or without skin)
1 shallot, finely diced
3 medium sized leeks, thoroughly washed and chopped into rounds
250g button mushrooms, diced
several stems fresh thyme, de-stalked
zest of half a lemon
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 cup (250ml) chicken stock
salt and freshly ground black pepper
flat leaf parsley
Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large based frying pan. Season the chicken with salt and black pepper. Brown on both sides until golden. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Add the shallot and leeks to the pan and sauté for several minutes or until softened. Add the mushrooms and cook on a medium-high heat until all the liquid has reduced. Season with salt, black pepper, thyme and lemon zest. Deglaze the pan with the wine. Reduce down by half and then add the chicken stock and cream. Return the chicken pieces to the pan, cover partially with a lid and simmer for about 40 minutes until the sauce has thickened and the chicken is cooked through. (I usually turn the chicken over once during the cooking time to ensure the flavours is evenly absorbed)
If you’re going to be eating the skin, I’d suggest you place the dish under the grill for several minutes to crisp up the skin. Scatter with plenty of flat leaf parsley and serve immediately.
Michael’s wine recommendation – CLICK HERE
Dianne Bibby is a former fashion designer, turned food enthusiast and avid cook. At 36 she hung up her fashionable hat, tied on her kitchen apron and started on a new culinary journey.
Her kitchen is a creative gathering place where meals are shared with family and friends, celebrating life and nurturing our connectivity. For Dianne food is relational and pivotal to the way in which she expresses love, care and hospitality. Currently she spends most of her time developing recipes and teaching group cooking classes.
Says Dianne, “My food philosophy is relatively uncomplicated with inspiration being drawn from diverse global food trends and seasonal produce. My recipes are not exclusively tied to any particular food preference but rather an exploration of all foods that are vibrant and fresh.”
Dianne hopes that you will be motivated and inspired to try something new, making the time you spend in the kitchen deeply satisfying and rewarding.
She’d love to hear from you – CLICK HERE