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Chicken Etouffee

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  • Complexity: difficult


  • Chicken Stock for Etouffee:
  • 1/2 lb chicken back or chicken neck
  • 3 cups cold water
  • 1/2 medium onion, unpeeled
  • 1 garlic clove, unpeeled and cut in thirds
  • 1 stalk celery, with top
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Flour Coating:
  • 10 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon red pepper
  • Fried Chicken:
  • 3 lbs chicken pieces salt
  • garlic powder
  • ground red pepper (preferably cayenne)
  • vegetable oil (for deep frying)
  • Seasoning Mix:
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground red
  • pepper (preferably cayenne)
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1/4 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • Roux and Gravy:
  • 6 tablespoons flour, using reserved extra flour coating
  • 1 3/4 cups chicken stock, for etouffee
  • Finish:
  • 4-6 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided, to your taste
  • 6 tablespoons very finely chopped green onions
  • chicken stock, as needed
  • 2 cups hot cooked rice


  1. Chicken Stock for Etouffee: Put chicken in water and bring to boil; add vegetables and bay leaf; simmer on low heat for 1-2 hours; replenish water as needed to keep 2 3/4 cups of liquid in the pot; strain and use immediately or refrigerate.

  2. Flour Coating: Combine all ingredients in a plastic bag.

  3. Fried Chicken: Generously rub all the chicken pieces with the seasonings; set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes; heat 1 1/2" oil to 375°F in a cast iron skillet; add chicken to flour coating and shake to coat thoroughly; reserve any excess flour.

  4. Fry chicken until browned and cooked through, about 8 minutes per side; drain on paper towels and set aside; pour oil from skillet, retaining, and scraping loose, any browned bits, and 1/4 cup of the oil in the skillet.

  5. Seasoning Mix: In a small bowl thoroughly combine all dry ingredients; set aside; combine chopped vegetables in separate bowl and set aside.

  6. Roux: Heat the oil over high heat in a large, heavy skillet until it begins to smoke, about 5 minutes; remove from heat; use a LONG handled whisk and gradually mix in flour; reduce heat to medium-high; return skillet to heat and cook, stirring constantly, until roux is dark red-brown, 3-5 minutes; don't let roux scorch and DON'T get it on your skin!

  7. Remove from heat and stir in HALF the combined vegetables; stir for 3 minutes while the roux cools down; set aside.

  8. Gravy: Bring the stock to a boil in a 2-quart saucepan; gradually whisk in roux and stir until incorporated; bring mixture to a rolling boil; reduce heat to low; continue stirring and simmer another 15 minutes; gravy should be very thick; set aside.

  9. Finish: In a large skillet, melt 2-3 T butter over very low heat; stir in remaining chopped vegetables and sauté 10-12 minutes, until completely wilted stirring occasionally; add the reserved gravy and the dry Seasoning Mix; simmer another 15 minutes and stir often.

  10. In a 4-quart saucepan, melt the remaining 2-3 T butter; sauté the green onions 2 minutes; add the chicken and gravy and bring to a boil over medium heat; remove from heat and set aside for 15 minutes.

  11. Skim oil off surface of etouffee; reheat, adding more stock if needed to thin the gravy; for each plate place 1/2 cup rice, pour on 1/3 cup sauce, and top with 2 pieces of chicken; serve immediately.

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