Slow Cooked Chicken, Guinness Stout, And Leek Stew

Brrrr. The cool air has finally moved into NYC this weekend. The weather sucks but it’s perfect for cooking those one pot comfort foods. I have not used my crock pot in ages and almost forgot how great they are. The chicken was fall apart tender and the stew itself rocked! So many layers of flavor with the leeks and stout, and don’t worry about the alcohol in the stout, it will burn off during the cooking process. This recipe should warm you up, Enjoy!78326_3943576192658_503504131_o

Ingredients:

3 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs
3 large leeks cut length-wise and rinsed well, then halved
1/4 cup plus 1/2 cup all-purpose flour, divided
1 tsp salt,, plus more to taste
1 tsp freshly ground pepper, plus more to taste
4 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3 pieces bacon, chopped
2 cups Guinness beer or other stout
1 pound whole baby carrots or large carrots cut into 1-inch pieces
2 medium celery stalks, diced small
1 8-ounce package button mushrooms, halved if large
1 large onion chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 tsp dried thyme
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
2 cups frozen baby peas, thawed

Directions:

Combine 1/4 cup of flour with 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper in a shallow bowl. Dredge chicken thighs in the mixture to coat completely and transfer to a plate. Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add half the chicken and cook until well browned, 2 to 4 minutes per side; transfer to a 8-quart slow cooker. Reduce heat to medium and repeat with the remaining oil and chicken thighs. Arrange the chicken in an even layer in the slow cooker. Add bacon to the pan and cook, stirring often, for 2 minutes or until fat starts to render. Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup flour over the bacon and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes more. Add the Guinness stout and use a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Pour the mixture over the chicken. Add carrots, celery, mushrooms, onion, garlic, leeks and thyme, spreading in an even layer over the chicken. Pour broth over the top. Cover and set the crockpot to low and cook until the chicken is falling-apart tender, 6 to 8 hours. Stir in peas, cover and cook until the peas are heated through, 5 to 10 minutes more. Season with the remaining salt and pepper and add more,  to taste . Serve with a hearty crusty bread, Bon Appetit!

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