The personal stories and adventures of a nerdy food lover.

Why did the chicken cross the road? To get in my belly!

OK, so those who are vegan or vegetarian might not think that was a funny joke (I wouldn’t really be surprised if my friends thought my attempt at telling a joke was a little lack lustre too), but in all seriousness, I’ve been wanting to cook some sort of casserole using chicken for a while. I’ve cooked many casseroles with beef or lamb, but not so much with chicken. I love chicken and it’s less expensive to buy than beef or lamb, so it’s perfect for me being on a strict Uni-bum budget. The other thing I love is how casseroles can be one pot wonders. I bought myself a casserole dish (on sale, of course) that was able to be used on the stovetop as well as the oven, and it is one of the best cookware items I have ever bought! I can cook off the ingredients and bake the casserole, all in one dish! No extra mess or fuss. Another thing I love about casseroles is that you usually end up with plenty of leftovers (which always taste better the next day) to either eat again the next day, or shove in the freezer for the next time you’re in the mood for casserole – another Uni-bum budget saver! This recipe can serve 4 people.

Get in my belly chicken, leek and bacon casserole
2 tbs olive oil
40g butter
8 chicken thigh cutlets (I use Lilydale free range chicken)
2 medium leeks, trimmed, halved, washed and sliced
4 rashers middle bacon, trimmed and chopped
2 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tbs dried thyme leaves
1 mini bottle of white wine (I used a 187ml bottle of Chardonnay)
¼ cup plain flour
2 cups chicken stock
200g button mushrooms, quartered
Mashed potato and crusty bread, to serve

Preheat oven to 160°C (fan forced). Heat half of the oil and butter in a flameproof casserole dish over medium-high heat. Cook chicken, in batches, for 5-6 minutes or until golden. Transfer chicken to a bowl.

Cook chicken in batches

Heat remaining oil and butter in casserole dish. Add leek, bacon, garlic and thyme. Cook, stirring, for a few minutes until the leek has softened. Add the wine and bring to the boil to cook the alcohol off. Stir in the flour, and cook for a minute. Slowly add the stock, stirring constantly to combine. Add the chicken back into the casserole dish. Chuck in the mushrooms.

Cook off bacon leek garlic and thyme Add wine, then add flour Gradually add stock Return chicken and add mushies

Cover, and bring to the boil. Transfer casserole dish to the oven, and bake for 1 hour. Remove the lid, then bake uncovered for another 30 minutes or until the chicken is tender. Serve with mashed potato and crusty bread.

Serve with mash and crusty bread

Note: I have changed the original recipe slightly, so if you would like to see the original recipe, click here. If you’re in the mood to change things up a little, this casserole is wonderful served with pasta. Also, I am in no way affiliated with Lilydale. I just happen to be a big fan of their free range chicken. If you haven’t seen their latest TV ad, click here to view it. I think it’s pretty cool.

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11 thoughts on “Why did the chicken cross the road? To get in my belly!

  1. Great pot. I have a coated cast iron pot that I adore too. This casserole looks great for the gloomy weather we are having today. I prefer chicken thighs too though if buying free range, I usually buy a whole chicken and portion it up myself. Not a job for the squeamish or fussy but very economical. Plus, you can save the breast for another dis.

    • I’m a huge fan of chicken dark meat – so much more flavour! I’d joint a whole chicken too if I was using a majority of the portions, otherwise I’d need to buy a few whole chickens and my freezer is tiny! I can’t see why you couldn’t use a whole chicken for this recipe instead of just using thigh. I might try that the next time I make this. Thanks for the idea! 🙂

  2. This looks really good! I haven’t cooked with leeks much, but maybe this recipe is a good place to start.

  3. LOL. you and I have the same corny sense of humour. One of my favourite things to say (when pointing out the irony of a situation) is “Oh the ironing!” and it is…ironic because I really hate ironing. My kids think I’m nuts but they are basically all teenagers so what else is new?

  4. sylviadewy on said:

    amazing recipe.. just looking at the picture and stomach started growling.. 😛

    Just wondering how it turned out as a beef recipe, beef got more juices than chicken.. yumm.. Ahh I have to try this recipe soon. Thanks for sharing

    • Thank you 🙂 You could replace the chicken with beef. You’d change a few things to make it more ‘beef’ appropriate, e.g. use red wine, dust the beef in flour rather than add the flour in with the veggies and use beef stock.

  5. I will be honest, I don’t like mushrooms. But as I continued to scroll the page reading your post the last image did it. This recipe is amazing and looks very delicious. The last image is very delectable making the food creation even more appealing.


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