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The One-Dish Chicken Cookbook: 120 Simply…

The One-Dish Chicken Cookbook: 120 Simply Delicious Recipes from Around…

by Mary Ellen Evans

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I made three dishes (and renewed the book twice) before I broke down and bought a copy of Mary Ellen Evans's The One-Dish Chicken Cookbook. I knew I ought to buy one after making the first recipe, but tried to resist as I do not need to own more cookbooks!

The first recipe I made -- the one that so rocked my world -- was for "Moroccan Chicken Tagine with Prunes" (pg 58). The prunes pick up and enhance the other ingredients so well that you don't taste prune so much as a marvelous hearty fruitiness. The tender chicken mixed with the meltingly soft bits of prune and vegetables and spices all work together to form the most marvellous sensory experience for the eyes, nose, and tongue. This dish was so delicious I would have eaten it morning, noon, and night for a month. For all that "tagine" sounds fancy, this dish is actually a just very simple stove top stew (which worked out really well as a make ahead dish and reheated very nicely in the microwave). I served it over a bed of couscous cooked with chicken broth and it made an excellent hot lunch all week.

Completely thrilled by immediate success, I tried "Chicken Breasts and Artichokes with Dill and Capers" (pg 102). While very elegant on the plate (and delicious in the mouth), this dish is just a very easy chicken bake. Boneless skinless chicken breasts are combined with artichokes, topped with a cream sauce, and baked. As with the tagine, this dish can be prepared ahead of time and works out quite well that way. The finished cream sauce comes out quite thin, but that could easily be rectified if you prefer a thicker sauce. I served this dish over rice which absorbed the thin sauce, regardless, and no one seemed to care whether the sauce was thick or thin.

For my third recipe I chose "Feta-Topped Chicken with Orzo" (pg 111 ) and was pretty pleased with the results. This is another baked chicken dish, but this time I made a tomato sauce which I poured over a bed of uncooked orzo, then topped with chicken and baked for a bit before topping with feta and baking until done. As with all of the above, I made this as a make ahead dish and was just as easy to make ahead of time as the others. My only complaint was that this dish was baked uncovered and it seemed to dry out a bit from all the moisture escaping. I might bake it covered for the first baking period and then remove the cover when I added the feta and bake it uncovered from there if I were to make this dish again.

While I love this cookbook, it is not without its flaws. Nutritional information and total time estimates are not provided. There are no illustrations. However, the dishes I've made (especially the tagine) have turned out so well that I do not care so much about those flaws as I otherwise might have. Definitely, this is something you should take a look at. ( )
  lagardner | May 1, 2010 |
Chicken tonight
Many American cooks lean heavily on chicken, and for good reason. It's cheap, it's easy to come by, it's widely loved, and it can be a base for dishes of all cuisines, all spice levels, and can be prepared by novices and gourmets alike. Mary Ellen Evans' "The One-Dish Chicken Cookbook" (Broadway, $18) will keep chicken even more upfront in home cooks' minds.

It's hard for a family to complain about getting too much chicken when one night it's chicken cacciatore, another night it's smothered inside enchiladas suizas, and another night spicing up the plates with kung pao chicken. India's chicken korma has long been a favorite of mine, but I've shied away from making it due to the complication. Evans' simple recipe is now my standby. Only one problem: I don't generally have crème fraiche on hand, and the korma isn't the only dish in the book that requires it. Shop ahead, I guess.

Her jambalaya recipe was tasty and quick, but it mixes both andouille sausage and bites of chicken. The diners in my house picked around the chicken and chomped on the andouille instead. They enjoyed the dish, but it was a bit odd to see the title ingredient shunned. Chicken and dumplings, that comfort-food classic, was a bit bland, even for such a homey dish. It was certainly quick to prepare, and would work on a weeknight when you just have to have chicken and dumplings in a hurry, but I'd rather prepare a different recipe, even if it took much longer to make.

I certainly can't argue with this book's versatility and simplicity. As promised, the dishes I tried only require you to dirty one pot (although a blender or other appliance may also get involved) For as long as chicken reigns in our kitchens and on our tables, there'll be a place for this book. —G.F.C.

  GaelFC | Nov 3, 2006 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 076791824X, Paperback)

More than 100 one-pot chicken recipes from around the world guarantee delicious dinners with international flair--and easy clean-up.

Chicken is what everyone wants for dinner the world over. Mary Ellen Evans has collected chicken recipes from around the globe for delicious quick weeknight meals or slow-cooked ones with almost no hands-on effort. And minimal clean up!

Here are a wide-ranging assortment of soups, stews, casseroles, stir-fries, pies, roasts, braises, salads, and more, including:

Bourbon-Brined Chicken with Cornbread Stuffing Paella
Jamaican Gingered Chicken Chicken and Chickpea Tagine
Chicken and Biscuit Pie African Chicken and Peanut Stew
Chicken and Asparagus Risotto Chicken with Black Bean Sauce
Thai Cornish Game Hens Chicken Vindaloo
Coq au Vin Chez Mary Philippine Chicken Adobo
Chicken Jambalaya Vietnamese Lemongrass Chicken
Portuguese Chicken and Sausage Stew Salad

This is a book that could be a lifesaver for anyone looking for simple yet stylish ways to dress up chicken for dinner.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:19:37 -0400)

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