Thursday, August 11, 2011

Poulet Antiboise : past repast

I haven't talked about food for awhile but that doesn't mean that I haven't been eating very well in fact, as Monsieur's skills are picking up and he is the food shopper around our house.

   Today he made a simple delicious chicken dish.

 My gourmand husband already has the experience of eating discerningly on "the European tour" when he was learning about wine, but now he is catching up with his skills on the preparing end of things.     He would be the last to admit this and is ultra fussy about how he approaches and shops for a dish.  I would say this is proof enough that he has what it takes to be an excellent cook.

Poulet Antiboise sounds "anti something" but it really just means chicken from Antibes, the once sleepy little fishing village that is sleepy no longer!  This recipe,  originally from the renowned  food writer,  Elizabeth David,  was recently reviewed by the chef at Le Cafe Anglais in London :

 Leigh Rowley   :

Poulet Antiboise

THe  main ingredients for this dish are:

a really good chicken,
1 kg of onions.
150 ml olive oil
cayenne pepper ,
20 black olives
and a few sprigs of fresh thyme.

THe onions are peeled and sliced and put into a deep casserole with the olive oil , a bit of salt and a pinch of cayenne.  On top of the onions place a cleaned chicken seasoned with salt and pepper.   Cover and cook gently in the oven for an hour and a half. ( #5) The onions will MELT gradually almost to a puree.

When the chicken is done it is cut into pieces, some of the oil is drained off with a colander and the onions are decanted onto a large serving dish and sprinkled with olives and thyme.  Serve the chicken bathed with the sauce.  That's it!

My husband says the secret is not a secret.  It's in the quality of all ingredients and the type of onions.  He uses what is known here and aptly named the sweet onion (although neither Rowley nor David specify).  Monsieur gets the best ingredients if he has to go to several places!

Nowadays many ( Rowley included)  lament that it is not easy to find simple country restaurants in France of the quality that were easily found in the 1970's .  As my husband was coming to  FRance at that time, he feels the same way and I have seen the deterioration in the last 20 years myself!.    For that reason, really discerning eaters find solace in preparing FRench recipes at home.

  And that describes, my own food lover husband who I affectionately call Monsieur and mostly refuses to eat out.  

 I am trying to get Monsieur to cook more often.    If he gets more confident he might even invite you.   You must be warned though, if it does happen, lunch will be served after 2 PM.   It always takes longer than he expects.

 Perfectionism is a burden to all that strive for it, but I am glad there are some who still do.


  1. We had dinner twice at Rowley Leigh's during our recent London stay. Superb food, and for the quality I'd say it's a bargain.