Creamy chicken in white sauce

Creamy chicken in white sauce
  • Serves icon Serves 4
  • Time icon Takes 1 hour to make, plus cooling

Use this basic chicken in a white sauce recipe to make three different dinners for 4: chicken a la king; chicken, mushroom and spinach pasta bake; or chicken, pea and bacon pies.

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • Knob of butter, plus extra 3 tbsp, softened
  • 16 boneless chicken thighs or 8 chicken breasts, diced
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 150ml dry white wine
  • 4 fresh bay leaves
  • Leaves from 3 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 3 tbsp plain flour
  • 700ml chicken stock, hot
  • 75ml double cream

Method

  1. Heat the vegetable oil and knob of butter in a large, deep frying pan or flameproof casserole. Season the chicken pieces and fry, in batches, over a medium-high heat, until lightly browned. Remove the chicken to a large bowl and set aside.
  2. Add the chopped onion to the pan and fry gently, without colouring, until softened. Add the garlic and cook for a further 30 seconds. Add the wine and herbs, then cover and cook for 10 minutes.
  3. Remove the lid and bubble over a high heat until the liquid is reduced to about 1 tablespoon. Add to the bowl with the cooked chicken.
  4. Add the extra 3 tablespoons of butter to the pan and melt. Add the flour and stir well to make a paste. Cook for 5 minutes, until a pale golden colour. Gradually add the hot stock, stirring constantly, until smooth and thickened.
  5. Return the chicken and onions to the pan. Cover and simmer gently for 5 minutes, then add the double cream. Check the seasoning. Set aside to cool.
  6. Once cool, divide the creamy chicken between 3 freezer bags or freezerproof containers, label and freeze. Now you have your base for one of the following recipes: chicken a la king; chicken, mushroom and spinach pasta bake; or chicken, pea and bacon pies.

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