Brown Stewed Chicken is a dish I grew up eating. It was a way of cooking chicken without a tomato sauce base. Seasoned chicken is cooked in a rich caramel sauce which adds a deep golden brown color as well as a slight sweetness and rich caramel flavor to the dish. The way my mom made it was to caramelize brown sugar until it’s dark brown to achieve the rich color and flavor. Today there are many browning sauces on the market but I prefer the old school method.
HOW TO MAKE BROWN STEWED CHICKEN
Pieces of chicken are seasoned with fresh green seasoning and allowed to marinate so that the flavors penetrate the meat. While whole chicken pieces can be use, it is best to use pieces of chicken that’s cut through the bone in to smaller pieces – this adds a another depth of flavor to the dish. The seasoned chicken is then stewed in then stewed in the caramelized brown sugar and is allowed to cook in it’s own juices. Potato wedges are added to the stew which thickens the sauce as well as adds a nice contrast to the rich stew.
HOW TO CARAMELIZE THE SUGAR
Oil and brown sugar is added to a heavy bottom pot over high heat. As the sugar melts, the color darkens. Eventually it will start to smoke as the sugar becomes darker. Some areas will darken faster, to prevent it from burning, stir the sugar mixture. Once the sugar becomes a rich dark brown, then it’s time to add the meat. It is important not to cook the sugar until it’s black or the stew will become bitter. Add the chicken stops the caramelization process and as the chicken is coated with the mixture, it takes on the flavor and deep rich color.
WHAT TO SERVE WITH BROWN STEWED CHICKEN
- 2 ½ lbs chicken pieces
- 3 tbsp green seasoning
- 1 tsp crushed ginger
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tbsp ketchup
- 1 ½ tsp vegetable
- ¼ cup brown sugar
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 small onion, sliced
- ½ green bell pepper, thinly sliced
- ½ red bell pepper, thinly sliced
- 7 sprigs thyme
- Water to cover meat
- 1 lb Yukon gold potatoes, cut into wedges
- 1 tsp soy sauce
- 2 chicken bouillon
Season chicken pieces
with green seasoning, crushed ginger, salt, black pepper and ketchup and mix to
combine. Marinate for at least 4 hours.
In a heavy bottom pot large
enough to make the chicken stew, heat vegetable oil and brown sugar and allow
to caramelize. The sugar will melt and
turn a dark brown(not black). Add
chicken and stir. Allow chicken to cook
for about 15 mins, without stirring, this should allow it to brown.
Add tomato paste and cook
for about 5 minutes. Add onion, red and
green bell peppers and thyme and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Add enough water to barely
cover the chicken, potato, soy sauce and chicken bouillon. Bring to a boil, then turn the fire down to medium
low heat and allow to simmer for approximately 20-25 minutes or until the potatoes
are tender and the sauce has reduced and thickened.
Remove from heat and stir
in scallions just before serving. This
is best served warm over rice.