This recipe is a delightful surprise if people are just expecting yet another stew, as it gives a good surprise to flavors which are anything but the typical stew. The wine, Herbs de Provence, and tapenade are critical in this recipe. I’ve used the store bought Herbs de Provence and I’ve made my own. My preference for overall flavor is to make my own blend of Herbs de Provence, which I include a recipe for below because my own mix is generally fresher and the distinctive taste for Herbs de Provence shines through, in comparison to the store bought mixture.
Because I’m in Ecuador, I had to make a few tweaks to this recipe. I cooked a whole chicken and used the broth and the chicken from that; I refuse to pay the price for canned tomatoes here so I use fresh tomatoes. I like the red ‘new’ potatoes for this but in Ecuador the potatoes are much different so I had to use them. They are much more dense…..I personally prefer the ‘new potatoes’.
Herbes de Provence is a mixture of herbs from Provence, France.
Chicken Provence Stew
2 medium carrots, peeled
3 tsp minced garlic
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, 2 turns of the pan
1 medium zucchini (diced)
1 small to medium red bell pepper (diced)
1 medium red onion (diced)
Salt and pepper to taste
1 Tblsp Herbs de Provence, available on spice aisle or (make your own – Donya’s recipe as follows: 1 tsp each dried sage, rosemary, marjoram, and thyme)
1 ½ lbs small red skinned potatoes (diced)
4 C. dry white wine
1 (14-ounce) can diced tomatoes
1 qt chicken stock
1 lb chicken breasts, diced
1 tsp cocoa
¼ tsp stevia
1 small jar black olive tapenade, 4 ounces or (make your own – Donya’s recipe below)
2 Tblsp chopped flat-leaf parsley
Heat soup pot on medium heat. Chop carrots into 1/4-inch dice, then add garlic, and stir to coat in extra-virgin olive oil. Chop and drop in the zucchini, bell pepper and onion next, 1/2 inch dice. Season all the veggies with salt and pepper and herbes de Provence. Cook the veggies together 5 minutes. While the vegetables cook, dice potatoes. Add wine to vegetables and reduce a minute or so. Add the tomatoes, cut potatoes and stock to the pot, cover the pot and raise heat to high. Bring the mixture to a boil, then add cut chicken and simmer 8 to10 minutes, until the potatoes are just tender and chicken is cooked through.
Serve stew in shallow bowls and stir in a rounded spoonful of black olive tapenade at the table. Top soup with chopped parsley and pass crusty bread at the table for dipping and mopping.
Donya’s Black Olive Tapenade
1 cans black olives
.5 oz anchovies – drained well (Napoleonis is a good brand)
4 oz capers – drained
Combine all ingredients in small chopper. Use olive oil until texture is like a pesto.