Chicken with Leeks in a Creamy Mustard Sauce
- Chicken, drumsticks or thighs, bone in, skin removed, around 1 kg (you can use a mix of thighs and drumsticks, bone in or boneless, adjust cooking time accordingly, if using boneless chicken weight to be around 650gms-700gms)
- Onions, finely sliced, 1 medium
- Leeks, White and pale green parts only, halved and then cut crosswise into 1 inch pieces, 2 large (refer to notes section)
- Garlic, finely chopped, 3-4 cloves,
- Chicken stock, 1 cup/250 ml
- Dijon Mustard, smooth or whole grain or a mixture of both, 3 tbsp
- Single Cream or Half-n-half, ¼ to ½ cup
- Lemon juice, about 1 tbsp
- Pepper, to taste
- Salt, to taste
- Paprika, about ½ tsp (optional, I sprinkle some paprika on the chicken just before frying for colour)
- Butter, 1 tbsp
- Oil, 1 tbsp + 1 tbsp
Marinate the chicken with lemon juice, salt and pepper for about half an hour (while you get on with the rest of the prep. Those leeks will take time cleaning and washing…will seem like forever! J )
Heat 1 tbsp oil + 1 tbsp butter in large non stick pan with cover and then brown the drumsticks on all sides on medium high heat.
Remove and keep aside (if using paprika, remember to sprinkle it on the chicken pieces just before adding to the pan)
Add the remaining 1 tbsp oil in the same pan on low heat and add the garlic. (If using chicken with skin on, you may need to remove some fat from the pan, instead of adding some more. Please do use your judgement to avoid an excessive oily dish)
When the garlic just starts to soften, add in the onion and leeks, stir well and cover the pan. Remove cover and stir after 3-4 minutes – the reason to cover is to get onions and leek to soften up in the steam without getting brown.
After about 10 minutes or so, remove about 1/3 to ½ of the onion and leek mixture from the pan and keep aside (optional, refer to notes section)
Add the stock to the pan and stir in the mustard. Increase the heat and let the stock come to a quick boil.
Reduce the heat to low, add in the chicken and cover the pan. Let the chicken cook for about 30 minutes.
Add back the leeks removed earlier and let it cook uncovered for another 10 minutes or so till the chicken is completely cooked and sauce is of nice consistency.
Gradually add the cream, a bit at a time. Let the sauce simmer on the lowest heat for about 3-4 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings, adding more salt and pepper as necessary.
Serve with steamed rice or crusty bread. (If using boneless chicken pieces, goes amazingly well with broad flat ribbon pasta)
- We like the bite of the leeks in the final dish and that’s why cut the leeks about an inch thick and then remove part of it after they soften a bit. If you would like the leeks to completely ‘melt’ in the sauce cut them fine and let them be in the pan throughout the cooking time.
- You can also add mushrooms if you want.Slice them into thick pieces and add them along with the leeks and onions.
- No leeks? Make using shallots or white onions. Add a cup of shallots or white onions instead of the leeks.
- There are times when I skip the cream completely– you know during those ‘I want to eat healthy phases’. The leeks anyways add to the creaminess and smoothness of the sauce. Would suggest that you do a taste test before adding the cream to see if you want to add cream and how much.
- Instead of starting with bone in raw chicken, you can use leftover shredded roasted chicken and toss it in the sauce along with the cream.
- If using boneless raw chicken chunks, sauté them first and then add back in the sauce once leeks and onions are completely cooked to your liking in the stock.