Sunday, January 9, 2011

Wine & Tomato Braised Chicken: The Discussion

Click here for the original recipe.

Night 1: Wine & Tomato Braised Chicken modifications:

I skipped the bacon. I tried ordering just 4 slices of bacon from my grocery store’s deli and I wasn’t paying attention and was handed four slices of Canadian bacon. NOT THE SAME THING! So before my three hours of high slow cooking was up, I just cooked some ground sausage and stirred it in to the sauce (so much for this being a healthy recipe…).

I also skipped the pre-cooking steps (that drives me crazy with slow cooker recipes). Instead, I blended ½ onion, garlic, spices, wine and tomatoes and poured the raw mixture over the chicken in the crock pot. I diced the remaining onion and threw it in on top of the chicken and sauce.

And since there are just two of us, I used six (vs. 10) chicken thighs which was plenty for Night 1 and 2, plus provided lots of leftovers!

I topped it with basil instead of parsley.

I served the chicken over egg noodles with broccoli with creamy Parmesan sauce on the side. Overall this was good, but kind of boring. Not bad, but not superb either. Hmmm, maybe it would have been better if I had followed the directions!

I put on gloves and shredded the chicken before I put away the leftovers so I’d be ready to go for night 2.

Night 2: Braised Chicken Gumbo

This was awesome! I came home late from work and only had to spend about 10 minutes making a great dinner.

I had intended to cook regular brown rice (because I didn’t have instant) but got home too late, so I just made Thai rice to serve the gumbo over. I also added celery and a Serrano chili and served red pepper flakes on the side. Next time I’d use a red bell pepper (vs. green) for more color. We washed the gumbo down with cold beer!

My overall thoughts is that this is a pretty sweet recipe. I love the concept of getting two completely different dinners out of one recipe!

I can't wait to hear how this turns out for everyone else!


  1. I think it's great you spent only 10 minutes on night 2. This was a great first recipe and lots to do with it. I just finished night 1!

  2. Ladies, I think these posts are awesome! You have re- inspired me to start cooking more often.

    So, I tried both recipes. On the first night, I used one extra slice of bacon (why use 4 when 5 will fit in the pan?) and boneless skinless breasts ( don't like dark meat or meat on a bone). I also replaced herbs de Provence instead of thyme. Otherwise, I followed the recipe as written. I served it with rice pilaf. The recipe was pretty good, but overall I would say a little bland. I would try it again but definitey add some additional spices.

    We LOVED night two. I forgot to reserve the liquid (whoops) so I had to add 2 cups of tomato sauce. I also sauted some garlic with the pepper. I added more spices too - parsley, more salt, and extra cayenne. I let the chicken and sauce simmer a bit longer, since I didn't have the benefit of the retained sauce. I used regular white rice. I served it with garlic bread. It was super easy, filling and tasty.

    Keep'em coming girls!!

  3. I really enjoyed breaking out my crock pot - I have not used it for years. I did not read the previous review before making the dish but I did follow the recipe to the letter and also found it kind of bland. If I was making it again, I would use more spices too. I did not separate the chicken and sauce for the gumbo so just used 3 cups of the mix with the chicken broth. It was fun to cook okra - a first for me but again, the dish was a little bland and a bit greasy too. That may have been because I mixed the sauce and chicken the previous night. Overall, it was great to cook something new and while it was not a big hit with my family, I'm all ready for February's recipe. This is the best idea - thanks so much for getting this going.

  4. Just finished dinner, and yum! The braised chicken was super tender and filling. I left out the fennel cause I don't like it, and used chicken tenders cause I was serving 4 people and wanted an easy service. Put it over whole wheat angel hair with fresh parm grated on top, and everyone cleaned their plates!! We don't even have enough to try night two! This was so super easy, and we're so excited to further explore crock pot recipes now! Thank you for sharing your idea with us... I love your blog idea and will be a faithful follower!
    love, michelle and her awesome sous chef, Rob! ;)