~ The Long French Lunch ~
Poulet Nomade ~ Nomad’s Chicken
(Herb Poached Chicken in a Jar)
Yes, it’s still raining, even in France where I am now for the summer……each day brings more shades of grey, and different levels of drizzle and dampness…….We’ve had ONE sunny day, when I had the picnic at the bottom of the garden, and enjoyed a Pan Bagnat for lunch…..and there is still the need for duvets on the bed! But, if there is one thing that I can still enjoy, it’s the Long French Lunch, albeit inside and at the kitchen table. The Long French Lunch……the first one I enjoyed in France was about 8 or 9 years ago, we met some friends for lunch at a little port village called Port Maubert, and the restaurant in question was L’Écluse; a fabulous unpretentious restaurant specialising in seafood and fish, especially caviar and sturgeon caught in the Gironde estuary, on which the port sits. We met our friends at Midday; we being me and my husband and my parents who were visiting us from England. We were a large party of 14, and we rather took over the outside terrace, sitting at an assortment of odd-shaped tables pushed together on the wooden decking and right by the estuary. We had aperitifs for an hour whilst we pondered over the menu ~ which is simply de rigueur in France!
The menu at the time, as I remember it, offered three or four appetisers, three main course options as well as a cheese board and choice of three or four desserts…..so not a huge amount to choose from but enough to need two or three Pastis to make the correct culinary decisions! They were famous for their seafood buffet as one of the appetiser options ~ an amazing array of fresh seafood including oysters, mussels, clams, razer clams, prawns, whelks, cockles and also roll-mop herrings too. I chose the buffet option followed by the fish of day, which was fresh sturgeon cooked over wood and was absolutely delectable ~ served simply with a huge baked potato and a slab of local salted butter. The cheeseboard was something to behold ~ an enormous wooden plank that was the size of a ship’s rudder, on which there were at least TWENTY types of French cheese…….and bizarrely nestled amongst the cheese were tiny plastic goats and cows ~ they looked like they had been stolen from a child’s toy farmyard set and they set me off laughing hysterically ~ just the sight of assorted plastic goats mounting a slab of artisan Chèvre and stumbling over a wedge of Camembert was just too much to take ~ or maybe I was just a little giddy due to the pastis and wine?
Each course was beautifully cooked and presented and the whole lunch took us FOUR hours……..absolute bliss ~ no waiters hovering around and breathing down your neck, nobody constantly asking “if everything is okay” even though you know they couldn’t care less half the time and all they want is your table……just simple, old-fashioned hospitality with really amazing local, freshly cooked food ~ and served with quiet efficiency. Anyway enough about that for now, I decided to cook the following recipe today, as per my meal plan on Monday, it’s a chicken dish, as I bought a rather enticing Red Label chicken yesterday, and my plan is that whilst the weather continues to be foul, or should I say fowl (sorry!) we are going to enjoy a Long French Lunch at home……
This recipe for potted chicken ~ Nomad’s chicken, is JUST fabulous; I found this recipe in a French magazine, (Femme Actuelle) whilst waiting in the doctor’s surgery, and yes I did tear the page out of the magazine ~ but I did ask! It’s such a great idea for portable chicken, hence its name. Chicken breasts are poached in a court-bouillon broth with garlic and thyme; the chicken is then mixed with fresh chèvre (goat’s cheese) and artichokes and is popped into a kilner jar with a little flavoured oil. Eh voila! It is ready to pack into a hamper for a picnic. C’est parfait! Serve this wonderful moist chicken salad mixture with crusty baguette or artisan bread, using the flavoured oil for dipping and dunking. This can be stored once cooked in the fridge for 1 to 2 days. (In the sealed kilner jar.) If you have fresh artichokes available, use them in preference to tinned ones.
I served this for lunch today at the kitchen table ~ it’s raining again as I mentioned before, so no chance of an “al fresco” meal. We ate it with crusty baguette, fresh tomatoes and spring onion, and by the way, we DID eat this in the manner of a Long French Lunch, with wooden serving platters and glasses of chilled Chardonnay, almost like an indoor picnic ~ with no sense of urgency, I hope you enjoy this recipe if you try it……….a bientôt! Karen.
Poulet Nomade ~ Nomad’s Chicken (Herb Poached Chicken in a Jar)
|Serves||3 to 4|
|Prep time||5 minutes|
|Cook time||45 minutes|
|Total time||50 minutes|
|Meal type||Appetizer, Lunch, Side Dish, Snack, Starter|
|Misc||Gourmet, Pre-preparable, Serve Cold|
|Occasion||Barbecue, Birthday Party, Casual Party, Easter, Valentines day|
|By author||Karen S Burns-Booth|
- 800g chicken breasts, skinned and boned
- 1 vegetable stock cube (court-bouillon cube)
- 1 litre water
- 250ml white wine (optional)
- 150g fresh goat's cheese (NO rind)
- fresh thyme (2 sprigs)
- 1 - 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- fresh ground black pepper, to taste
- salt, to taste
- 4 tinned/canned artichoke hearts, diced
- 80g almonds, slivered and toasted
- 2 tablespoons pumpkin oil or 2 tablespoons olive oil
This is such a great idea for portable chicken, hence its name. Chicken breasts are poached in a court-bouillon broth with garlic and thyme; the chicken is then mixed with fresh chèvre (goat’s cheese) and artichokes and is popped into a kilner jar with a little flavoured oil. Eh voila! It is ready to pack into a hamper for a picnic. C’est parfait! Serve this wonderful moist chicken salad mixture with crusty baguette or artisan bread, using the flavoured oil for dipping and dunking. This can be stored once cooked in the fridge for 1 to 2 days. (In the sealed kilner jar.) If you have fresh artichokes available, use them in preference to tinned ones.
|Step 1||Gently poach the chicken breasts in a saucepan with the water, into which the court-bouillon cube has been dissolved. Poach them over a low to medium heat for 12 to 15 minutes, then turn off the heat, cover the saucepan with a lid and allow to cool in the liquid for about 30 to 45 minutes. (You can add a little white wine to the water if you wish, reduce the water to 750ml and add 250ml of white wine)|
|Step 2||Once cool enough to handle, drain and cut the chicken into small bite sized pieces. |
In a bowl, crush the fresh chèvre (goat's cheese) with a fork, until roughly crumbled with the leaves from the fresh thyme sprigs. Add the black pepper, salt and garlic to taste. Mix gently, then add the chicken pieces and then the chopped artichoke hearts and the toasted slivered almonds. Mix gently before adding the oil - then decant the chicken salad into a clean/sterilised glass jar, such as a kilner jar, which has an airtight lid.
|Step 3||Seal with the lid before storing in the fridge until needed, for up to 1 to 2 days. Turn the jar upside down a few times throughout the day making sure that the oil covers the chicken.|
|Step 4||Serve at the table from the jar or on a picnic with plenty of paper napkins and crusty, rustic bread! Salad leaves would also be a great addition to this chicken salad.|
Have you ever enjoyed a Long French Lunch?
If so, was it in France or at home for Sunday Lunch?
Oui Oui Oui! I would love to have a long French lunch although really I can’t complain as I’m currently in lazy mode of eating, sleeping and blogging!
Mais oui! GOOD for you Ros, glad to hear that someone is enjoying life!! 🙂 Karen
Jen Price says
I love long French lunches when I go to visit my parents in the Limousin. In fact I’ve sent this post to my Mum because I don’t think she’s tried this yet and I’m sure it would go down well 🙂
Oh great Jen! Where in Limousin does your mum live? We used to have a house in the Poitou….not far away. Yes, the long French lunch is a thing of beauty and taste! Karen
Jen Price says
My parents are in a tiny little village about an hour north of Limoges. I love going to visit as it’s so beautiful there
I KNOW Limoges well, you must let me know next time you are over, we may meet up!
A long French lunch absolutely sounds like something I would enjoy. I have some friends from France and I was once invited for a shortened supper the French way.
Slow Suppers are also GOOD too Chris! Thanks for popping by….. Karen
oooh a long French lunch happens daily when we visit my inlaws in South of France! this is a delicious recipe as always. Thanks Karen xx
You cannot beat a long French lunch can you? LOVE them and this recipe too! Thanks Nazima! 🙂
Ahhhh the perfect lunch… It’s 6:51am here. It’s raining (again) but you have transported me to a better place with your beautiful description of fabulous meals. I am now also STARVING. Love the potted chick. Quite unusual but I’m loving it!
You are up early! I am an early bird too….have already let the chickens out, emptied the dishwasher, defrosted some hake for lunch, set the table, made some bread and I am now here, of course! It was raining here, again, earlier on, but now the sun is out – GREAT weed growing weather! This potted chicken really is fab, you should try it for a Belleau Cottage picnic!
Katharine from Leeks and Limoni says
We have long Italian lunches whenever we’re back in Italy visiting friends and family – at GL’s parents’ house, when we eventually leave the table, I often have no feeling left in my legs! Back home in Wales, the rigours of work mean that we have to content ourselves with long lazy dinners instead…
Love this post and also the pan bagnat which has made me dream of my holidays in the Var in the south of France – only a few weeks to go!
Thanks so much for your lovely comments Katharine…..and I think that we do LONG dinners so much better than lunches in the UK, maybe to do with the weather! I think the Long Lunch is very much a thing of the romance language nations in Europe, and I suspect that an Italian lunch is just a good as a French one! Enjoy Var – it’s a lovely place! Karen