Mmmmmm……… this was unexpectedly fabulous! I know that self-praise is no praise but I truly did not think the outcome of my simple little idea would work so well. I had the dire urge of making yet another roast chicken dinner. When I go out to eat in a restaurant, which is a rare occurrence, I know I should want to try something I would never think of cooking? However, I am always drawn to trying the chicken! If a restaurant gets the chicken right I give it my stamp of approval. I roasted a chicken in my usual way but while it was resting I used the pan sauce and combined it with a separate mushroom cream made on the stove-top Frying the mushrooms separately (I used some when roasting the chicken also) and thickening with cream gave them a distinction of their own. I also figured that the mushroom sauce could stand on its own and be part of a simple pasta dish. It was rich with a lovely earthy depth.
I keep recommending things to try, but, you really have to try this one…..with or without chicken. I would have eaten the sauce right out of the pan sopping up with bread as I ate!
You will need: 1 cut-up chicken (about 4 lbs – I had a kosher chicken which has been soaked in salt water – gives it a lot of moistness and flavor), 1 sweet onion, 2 lbs mushrooms (I used 1lb shiitake & 1 lb white mushrooms), 1 tbs fresh rosemary, 6 garlic cloves, 1 1/2 cups chicken broth, 1/2 cup white wine, 4 tbs unsalted butter, 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream, salt & freshly ground black pepper for seasoning and to taste, 1 1/2 cups baby frozen peas (optional)
Preheat oven 400*
Dice onion, separate garlic cloves, chop rosemary (roughly) and slice 1/2 lb of the white mushrooms and put in bottom of big saute pan or roasting dish. Trim chicken of extra skin and fat and lay on top of the vegetables. Add the white wine and broth and sprinkle chicken with about 1 tbs of olive oil. Season whole pan with pepper (and salt if not using kosher chicken – I don’t use salt as the kosher chicken has plenty of salt flavor). Place in oven for 1 hour.
While chicken is cooking, make the mushroom cream: slice mushrooms and saute in two batches on medium to high heat in butter (use 1/2 of the butter for each batch) until browned, about 8 minutes.
When mushrooms are cooked, add all the mushrooms to the pan and add the heavy cream. Let everything simmer for 5 or so minutes until the mixture has thickened. Turn off heat until chicken is done.
When chicken is done, remove meat to a plate (cover with foil)) and add the pan liquid to the mushroom cream mixture.
Turn heat to low and let the flavors mingle. When chicken is cool enough to handle take meat off of the bone and return to platter and cover to keep warm.
Put a pot of water on to boil and cook 3/4 lb of rigatoni according to instructions. When cooked reserve 1/4 cup of pasta water before draining. Drain pasta and add to mushroom sauce. Put 1/2 cup water on to boil and cook peas for 3 minutes. drain and add 1/2 tbs butter, cover and keep warm (optional)
At this point you have a lot of options; Serve as a vegetarian dish as is.
Serve with chicken.
Serve with chicken and boiled baby frozen peas (which is how we had it)