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Chicken and Red Pea Cassoulet


4 ounces bacon, slabs cut into 1-inch slices ¼ inch thick

1 chicken, quartered and seasoned with salt and pepper

1 Vidalia onion, diced

1 carrot, diced

1 celery stalk, diced

½ parsnip, diced

¼ rutabaga, diced

1 tomato, chopped

2 garlic cloves, sliced

2 cups Sapelo red peas, soaked in cold water for 2 hours

1½ quarts chicken stock

1 bouquet garni (bundled herbs such as thyme, parsley, rosemary)

Salt and pepper

1 tablespoon soy sauce


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large pan over low heat, cook bacon until browned. Remove meat and set aside, leaving rendered fat in pan. Over medium heat, sear chicken quarters in bacon fat until brown. Remove meat and set aside. To pan, add onion, carrot, celery, parsnip, rutabaga, tomato, and garlic, sautéing until lightly browned. Return chicken to pan, along with peas, stock, bouquet garni, salt, pepper, and soy sauce. Bring to boil.
  2. Cover pan and move to warm oven. Bake for about 10 minutes, checking chicken breasts for doneness. When they're cooked through, remove them from the pan and set aside. Place pan back in oven and cook for about 1 hour, or until beans are done. Remove legs and shred meat, and slice breast meat. Add to cassoulet. Season with salt and pepper and garnish with cooked bacon.
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