BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) -
Prep Time: 1½ hours
Yields: 6–8 servings
Comment: There’s a great population of Irish living in the Irish Channel of New Orleans. Their recipes are often a combination of their heritage with a touch of the Crescent City. This recipe incorporates their love of meat pies with the cathead biscuits of the south.
Ingredients for Chicken Stew:
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs, (1-inch) cubed
1½ pounds bacon, diced
¼ cup olive oil
salt and cracked black pepper to taste
granulated garlic to taste
2 cups coarsely diced onions
¼ cup sliced garlic
½ cup flour
2 quarts chicken stock
3 cups (1-inch) sliced carrots
3 cups (1-inch) sliced celery
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
2 cups diced red potatoes, skin-on
8 Cathead Biscuits (see recipe below)
Method for Chicken Stew:
In a 1-gallon stockpot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add bacon to render fat, but do not brown.
Add chicken and season lightly with salt, pepper, and granulated garlic. Stir-fry until lightly browned.
Add onions and sliced garlic. Sauté 2–3 minutes.
Add flour, stirring constantly to form a white roux. Do not brown.
Add stock and blend well into roux mixture. Add carrots, celery, bay leaf, and thyme. Bring to a rolling boil, reduce to simmer and cook 30 minutes.
Add potatoes and cook approximately 20 minutes or until tender.
NOTE: Stock should become slightly thickened after 30 minutes of cooking, and the addition of potatoes will further thicken sauce.
While cooking, proceed with the Cathead Biscuit recipe. When ready to serve, place one (6–8 ounce) ladle of chicken stew into a soup bowl then add 1 hot cathead biscuit in center.
NOTE: You may also use your favorite store-bought canned biscuits in place of the cathead biscuits.
Ingredients for Cathead Biscuits:
2 cups flour
1 tbsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
½ tsp salt
⅓ cup shortening
4 tsps butter
⅔ cup buttermilk
Method for Cathead Biscuits:
Preheat oven to 450°F.
In a mixing bowl, sift flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Blend well.
Using a pastry cutter, cut in shortening and butter until it resembles coarse cornmeal. Using a large cooking spoon, blend buttermilk into flour mixture until moistened.
On a lightly floured surface, knead dough until it comes together. Do not overwork dough as the less it is handled, the flakier the biscuits.
Break dough into 8 equal portions and pat approximately ½-inch thick onto a baking sheet. Biscuits should be irregular in shape, but no more than ½-inch high and 1-inch apart.
Bake 10–15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and brush with melted butter.