Chicken & Root Vegetable Casserole

I’m being good about #monthlyveg this month and making sure I cook with rutabagas right from the start. This is my 2nd dinner with it so far and I have quite a few recipes lined up and ready to try in the next 2 weeks. The majority of dishes I’m finding are very hearty, wintery, traditional British-style so I’m also making a conscious effort to look for things which are a bit different, too.

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I never particularly liked casserole as a child. I found it too bland but, at the time, didn’t like anything that would have given it flavor. This time around I determined that I would make something super tasty. My secret ingredient is marmite, which I’m fortunate enough to be able to find in my local supermarket, even though I live in the US. If you aren’t so lucky, try finding vegemite and, if that fails too, check Amazon. Marmite basically never goes off so it doesn’t hurt to buy a small jar for even the most occasional cooking.

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This serves 4 or freezes nicely to serve 2 twice. You’ll need:

  • 2 lbs skin-on chicken (breasts or thighs, your preference)
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 – 2 rutabagas/swedes
  • 1 potato
  • 1 leek
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 tbsp marmite
  • several sprigs of thyme

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Heat up 2 spoons of olive oil in a large skillet and sprinkle both sides of the chicken with salt and lots of thyme leaves. Fry the chicken, skin-side down, on a fairly high heat until it starts to brown and crisp. Turn it over and repeat on the other side, then remove to a casserole dish (don’t worry if the chicken isn’t cooked all the way through). Turn the heat down then add the rest of the olive oil to the pan and chop the onion and garlic. Add them to the frying pan along with the marmite and cook slowly, stirring frequently, until they soften and brown.

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Preheat your oven to 350F and peel and cube the rest of the vegetables and add everything to the casserole dish. Add a generous sprinkle of freshly-ground black pepper, and some salt if your broth isn’t already very salty.

Stick the lid on and bake for about an hour. Eat.

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