La Chatte Gitane (or The Gypsy Cat) was the name we chose for our cottage in France at the time. We chose it while on the road, moving house the first time round, from Ireland to France with 2 dogs and 7 cats in the car.
This blog began its insignificant life as a recipe book for friends and family who would ask me repeatedly for a recipe of this, that and the other.
Since then it has taken many different directions, like we did and like gypsies tend to do. Sometimes making a U-turn and revisiting familiar roads and taking a break when necessary.
You'll find recipes here, but also musings about the places we've called home, the gardens that we've established, not always successfully, the homes we've improved and the environments we've lived in. Currently, after yet another stint in Ireland, we're back in France @ Le Mas d'Ayen

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Poached Chicken


  • 1 whole chicken (preferably free range or organic)
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 3 celery stalks, washed and cut into 4
  • 1 large carrot, washed or peeled, quartered
  • 1 fennel bulb, washed and quartered
  • a handful of parsley stalks
  • 4 bay leaves
  • a few sprigs of thyme
  • 1 lemon, sliced
  • 1 tbsp black pepper corns
  • 1 tbsp coarse sea salt
It is dead easy.

The carrots here are hiding at the bottom. You'll just have to take my word for it.

  • put the chicken in a cooking pot, large enough to contain all ingredients plus water
  • arrange all other ingredients around and over the chicken
  • cover with cold water
  • bring to the boil
  • turn down the heat, and let it simmer ! for about 1 hour.

  • take the chicken out of the stock straight away and transfer to a plate or shallow dish.

  • Drain the stock through a colander and use it for soups, sauces, gravy...The vegetables are for the chooks.
  • Pick the meat off the bones while still hot/warm. It'll come off easier than when it is cold.
Use the succulent meat for salad, sandwich, soup, ragout, chicken pie

Skin and cartilage  for the dogs

Discard of the bones. Bin or compost.

And there you have it. Simple and doesn't take a lot of effort. You'll get quite a few meals out of this.

Patricia xxx...x


  1. I've never had poached chicken before. Do you mind me asking how different it tastes to roasted (sorry if this is a stupid question). X

    1. Not a stupid question at all.
      When I roast a chicken I rub it all over with salt, spices and herbs, so it will be more flavoursome, but a little more dry.
      Poached chicken is more tender, white and succulent. It will lend itself better for more delicate (flavour wise) dishes, like chicken and mushroom vol-au-vent.
      The stock from poached chicken will me clear, while stock made from roasted chicken will have more depth in colour and probably taste. The first stock will be very suitable for say a consommé (clear soup). x

  2. Hello Patricia thankyou for following my blog, your blog is right up my street, looking forward to reading more x


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