A couple of months ago, we bought a giant 10 lb bag of red potatoes from Costco for $8. I thought this would be a good idea. Potatoes are versatile. We could make all sorts of recipes with potatoes. But with so many other options for meals, the supply of potatoes decreased very slowly, and for the past couple of weeks, we've been trying to use them up before they rot and liquify (that may have happened before). As a result, we're really tired of potatoes. But this recipe for braised chicken with celery and potatoes - adapted from this Whole Foods recipe - used them well and it was a good final dish for the giant bag of potatoes (which we are not buying again anytime soon).
One thing that was great about this recipe is that we had most of the ingredients on hand (everything but the plain yogurt). I did make some adjustments - (1) using frozen chicken breasts instead of a whole chicken, (2) using all those red potatoes instead of 4 medium new potatoes, (3) using plain regular yogurt instead of Greek yogurt, and (4) adding fried onions - but otherwise the ingredient list is generally the same as the recipe.
Recipe ingredients (other than the chicken)
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts ($2)
- Salt ($0.05)
- Black pepper ($0.05)
- 1/2 cup flour ($0.30)
- Canola oil ($0.10)
- Celery stalks ($1.10)
- Potatoes ($1.60)
- 1/2 cup white wine ($2)
- 1 can low sodium chicken broth ($0.72)
- 1 tbsp dijon mustard ($0.40)
- 1/2 cup nonfat plain yogurt ($0.40)
- Fried onions, to garnish ($0.60)
A nice dinner for two for about $9. Not too bad for a dish that includes chicken, lots of celery and potatoes, and wine. [Note that I pulled the wine price out of thin air; it's wine that is leftover from our reception so I have no idea how much it cost this many years later.]
Chicken in progress
I followed the recipe (here) with very little variation, so I won't recite all the steps in detail here. The only changes I made were that (1) I mixed the salt and pepper into the flour mixture instead of doing it as a separate step and (2) I added some water at the same time as the chicken broth to make sure there was enough liquid to cover most of the chicken.
But the short version of the steps are: prep, dredge chicken in flour mixture, brown chicken, cook celery and potatoes, add wine, add broth and mustard, return chicken, bring to boil and then simmer covered for about 20 minutes. The sauce is just the leftover liquid reduced a little, plus yogurt whisked in. It's fairly simple, and it used techniques that I know I can replicate with other ingredients, which was exactly what I was looking for.
The finished dish
We liked this dish. It tasted like simple comfort food, French style. A little rich and creamy, but in a healthy way.
I think next time, since we're not buying the giant bag of potatoes again, this chicken would go well with a vegetable base of celery, carrots, onions and garlic (and maybe one potato for creaminess). I might also use more mustard, salt and pepper. I liked this a lot, especially as healthy comfort food, and would definitely try making this again.