Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Cooking With Betty Anonymous

I just got back from running errands and found this lovely email in my inbox:
Dear Betty Debbie,

When we did Victory for Victoria I found a recipe for Chicken Savoyarde that looked simple and tasty to me. I sent an e-mail to UKTV to find out if it was ok for me 'to copy and "print" it as a post' for our blog. This is their reply:

Thank you for your email.

Please accept our apologies for the delay in getting back to you - we had to check this with our web team.

We think you will be pleased to know that they said it was fine for you to link to the recipe, as long as you credit and place a link back to the recipe on the words 'chicken recipe', for example, "This 'chicken recipe' came from'

Kind regards

The UKTV Team

Needless to say I was extremely pleased. So, could you please post the recipe for me? Pretty please?
Thank you.

Betty Anonymous

Victory for Victoria
They had leisurely drinks in the bar of the peaceful old pub and dined off Chicken Savoyarde, followed by chocolate roulade washed down with white burgundy ...

Chicken Savoyarde

This 'chicken savoyarde recipe' came from

By: Tamasin Day-Lewis From: Tamasin Day Lewis

Prep time:      50 min
Cook time:     1 hr 40 min
Serves:                       6
From Tamasin Day-Lewis, a comforting dish of chicken in a mustard and tarragon sauce, topped with breadcrumbs and Parmesan


For the sauce:
  • 60 g butter
  • 50 g plain flour
  • 400 ml chicken, hot stock from the poached
  • 300 ml dry white wine
  • 225 ml double cream
  • 100 g gruyère cheese, grated
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 50 g tarragon, chopped
  • butter, for greasing
  • black pepper
To serve:
  • buttered new potatoes
  • green salad


1. Put the chicken in a stockpot or large saucepan and cover with water. Stud one of the onions with the cloves and add to the pot along with the remaining vegetables, the herbs and salt to taste.

2. Bring slowly to the boil, skimming off any scum that comes to the surface. Reduce the heat to the merest simmer and poach very gently for about 1 1/2 hours. Once cooked, lift out the bird and allow to cool.

3. Strain the stock through a muslin-lined fine sieve and discard all solids. Leave to settle, then blot off any surface fat using several sheets of paper towel.

4. Strip the meat from the chicken carcass, discarding the skin and removing all sinews from the drumsticks.

5. Cut the meat into large bite-sized pieces.

6. To make the sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes without browning.

7. Gradually stir in the hot chicken stock, the white wine and cream. Keep stirring until thickened.

8. Stir in the cheese, mustard, tarragon. Check the seasoning then simmer, stirring occasionally, for about 20 minutes until smooth and thickened.

9. Meanwhile, preheat the oven to 230°C/gas 8. Butter a gratin dish.

10. Put the chicken pieces in the gratin dish and pour over the sauce. Sprinkle with the breadcrumbs and Parmesan. Bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown and bubbling around the edges.

11. Serve with buttered new potatoes and a crisp green salad.


  1. Betty Barbara here--
    Always looking for a new chicken casserole recipe and thank you for this one! Being incredibly lazy I would probably substitute a store bought rotisserie chicken, which would give it a different base flavor, I know. But--cheese sauce!! How can you not love cheese sauce??!!!
    Printing off recipe now---
    But it will be next winter before I try this because here in Maryland (USA)it is already summer-- which means 90 degree(F) days with 90+% humidity. Which means No Cooking!! in the house. If it can't be grilled, or made into a sandwich--then it's cooked in a restaurant!!

  2. Betty Barbara --

    You can still make the special stock with rotisserie chicken. Check out the instructions for this Pasta and Chicken Gratin recipe from Epicurious.

    But I agree about the cooking. It's cooler here in the "mountains" (not to be confused with proper mountains) but East Coast "hot, hazy & humid" is no time to be turning on the oven.

  3. Well if I could EVER get any cooperation from you girls we could have already hunknapped that handsome guy and his cute chef buddy from the Amstel but we just don't seem to be able to pull a plan together do we, hmmmmm? They could cook it for us whilst we swooned...

    Betty von Susie

    P.S. I just had the Sweet Spinach Crisp salad with extra goat cheese from Corner Cafe and it was yummo.

    1. P.P.S. Metric cooking measurements are the leading cause of beastly Dutch oaths in the home today.

      P.P.P.S. I still don't see any donkeys.

      Betty von Susie

    2. Yeah. Hunknapped - whilst we swooned. Had me laughing out loud.
      Betty Anonymous

  4. Here's a conversion (some numbers have been rounded):
    • 4-5 lb. chicken
    • 2 onions
    • 2 cloves
    • 2 carrots, halved lengthways
    • 3 stick celery
    • 2 leeks, trimmed
    • 2 fresh bay leaves
    • 2 sprig thyme
    • salt
    • ½ cup breadcrumbs
    • 2 ½ Tbsp parmesan, grated
    For the sauce:
    • ½ cup butter
    • ½ cup plain flour
    • 1 ¾ cup chicken, hot stock from the poached
    • 1 ½ cup dry white wine
    • 1 cup double cream
    • ½ cup gruyère cheese, grated
    • 1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
    • 2 Tbsp. tarragon, chopped
    • butter, for greasing
    • black pepper

    The oven conversion would be 450 degrees (seems a bit hot to me for this but...)

  5. I was a little intimidated by the name and long list of ingredients until I got to the bottom and realized, "Oh, chicken in a cheese sauce!" and had my Fanny Brice/Barbra moment!

    Just some dried-out toast in a sliver
    On the top a...a little chopped liver!

    Your welcome for the young Omar moment.

    Only watch this one if you want to know what the RBD Father version of
    Omar would be like. Actually it creeped me out a little.

  6. Just a question. Is Tamasin related to Daniel?

    Now he'd make a nice RDD, maybe ten years into the marriage! Or would you say he's middle aged?
    No, never that.

    1. Betty Mary, meant to mention that yesterday. Yes, Daniel Day Lewis is Tamasin's brother.
      He is Betty van den Betsy's "own personal favorite TD&H" (tall, dark and handsome).
      Personally, I find him creepy. Definitely middle-aged. But that is just my opinion.
      Betty Anonymous

  7. Betty Mary, Daniel is definitely middle-aged, at around 55. He's probably not a good RDD candidate, as he's apparently fairly crazy, and he will keep letting his hair grow long. But in keeping with RDD tradition, he is amongst the world's best in his chosen profession. Plus I saw him in My Beautiful Laundrette at an impressionable age, and as such will love him forever.

  8. My first experience was My Left Foot. Hard to fall in love with that. I've heard he's quiet the hunk as Hawkeye, but haven't seen that one.
    My heart throb has always been Mark Harmon. I'm not sure where I saw him first. But I was very affected by his TV movie After the Promise. And I watched St. Elsewhere a lot. Also he married a Michigan girl (Pam Dawber), so he has great taste in women! Funny thing is I don't watch much TV anymore so I never never he was in a TV show that was on now. I didn't find out about NCIS until last summer! BettyMegan started watching it, sometimes all day long! I enjoy the view.