Recipe by Joel Friedland
What follows is what I remember eating at the Eden Roc in Miami Beach 40 years ago and what I served when was a busboy in the Catskills 35 years ago. keep in mind that hotels make and serve Chicken Fricassee to use their leftovers. The recipe is meant to be made with cheap chicken parts. It's cheaper and better that way. It's best served over rice or egg noodles, but is fine to eat on its own. Chicken backs are bone and fat -- and little meat -- that's between a chicken thigh and the chicken leg. There's a lot of flavor there. When made with boneless chicken thighs in a slow cooker without the gizzards and hearts, its more conventional and makes a great sandwich.
- 5 lbs cheap chicken pieces (Backs and Wing Tips are best)
- 2 lbs chopped onions
- 2 (28 ounce) cans crushed tomatoes
- 4 chopped garlic cloves
- 3 tablespoons paprika
- 1 tablespoon pepper
- 1 -2 lb chicken gizzard
- 1 -2 lb chicken, hearts
Directions See How It's Made
- Make Chicken Stock from the chicken backs and wings. Firm up the gizzards and chicken hearts in the hot stock.
- Save the stock in your fridge.
- Remove the skin and meat from the chicken backs and wings. Discard the bones. Save the bigger pieces of chicken meat in your fridge for chicken salad.
- Place the chicken fat and gristle and odd chicken meat pieces in a teflon pan on medium. Add in the chopped onions. When the onions get translucent, add in the crushed tomatoes, garlic, paprika, and pepper. Then add in the chicken gizzards and/or hearts and reduce the heat to low. Stir it all up every 10 to 15 minutes or so. It'll be done in less than an hour. The flavor improves when stored overnight.
- Chicken necks are also often added in, but are not sold separately that often any more and are hard to find. Cooking up chicken necks in the stock, and then taking the meat off the necks for the fricassee is nice to do.
- This recipe has no added salt because canned tomatoes are usually salted. Caterers often add pimento stuffed olives to this just before serving.