Winter Days

January 06, 2018 3 Comments

My gosh, it’s cold in New Jersey, and I must admit, I love it! Bundled up to my eyes - literally - in layers of down and polar fleece and with the dog leading the way, outside we go into the invigorating and crystal clear air for our walks. It’s one of the prettiest times of year, when you can really see the bones of the landscape that surrounds you, as well as houses that are usually hidden behind a screen of leafy trees. Neighbors are sparse when the temperatures dip this low and, while I love them dearly, it’s nice to have the countryside all to myself. When I get home and unwrapped, I want to eat something warm and satisfying. If it can be made in one pot, all the better! 

This recipe is from a book I picked up on Martha’s Vineyard called Vineyard Harvest. Most people think of the Vineyard as a summer place but I’ve had some magical times there in the dead of winter, when the dirt roads are iced over and there isn’t much to do but stay home and cook all day. Not only delicious, this is easy and, compared to every beef stew I make, quick. The only tricky bit is making sure you have saffron. Try not to skip it…it’s scent and flavor are like nothing else and really makes this dish sing. Not to mention, saffron’s golden yellow color is sure to cheer all those who are less enthusiastic than me about these winter days.

Chicken Stew with Saffron and Cream


3 tablespoons butter

2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1" chunks, lightly tossed in flour, salt and pepper

2 onions, sliced

3 garlic cloves, minced

¾ teaspoon saffron threads

2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes cut into 2" pieces

2 cups carrots, cut into 1" pieces

Salt and pepper

3/4 cup dry white wine

2 1/2 cups chicken broth

1/2 cup heavy cream


Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

In a Dutch oven with cover, melt the butter over medium-high heat; add the chicken chunks, and sauté, letting the chicken brown lightly on all sides, about 8 minutes.  Remove the chicken from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside. 

Reduce the heat to medium-low, add the onions, reduce to a simmer, and cook for about 15 minutes to caramelize.  Add the garlic and saffron and stir.  Add the potatoes, carrots, and salt and pepper to taste.  Cover and cook for another 5 minutes.  Add the chicken and wine, deglaze pot, and then add chicken broth.

Cover the pan halfway and put in the oven.  Bake for 30 minutes.  Add the cream, stir, and continue cooking, partly covered, for another 20 minutes.  Serve in shallow bowls.

Serves 4 - 6

3 Responses


January 21, 2018

We made this and it was super yummy! Thanks Alice.


January 11, 2018

Gotta try it!!


January 08, 2018

I’m totally making this!

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