Recipes: A lighter tackle Southern-style smothered rooster, ribs, and turnips

Recipes: A lighter take on Southern-style smothered chicken, ribs, and turnips

Though it’s acquainted in cooking nomenclature, the phrase “smothering” bears a faintly sinister connotation. Fortunately, the outcomes dispel any notion of foul play. Easy, homey dishes strongly related to the South, smothered meats are sometimes served with a flour-thickened gravy. These recipes, nevertheless, symbolize a lighter take — basically braises with plenty of onions and no added liquid. Meat and onions create a pure “jus” with a pure, uncomplicated taste. I scale back it slightly to pay attention, and add a little bit of butter to the meat dishes for richness and sheen, however that’s all. Save the gravy for Thanksgiving.

Thyme-Smothered Rooster

Serves 4

Sizzling buttered grits, white rice, or baked potatoes (white or candy) are nice alongside this straightforward, fragrant rooster dish, tailored from The Reward of Southern Cooking, by Edna Lewis and Scott Peacock.

Rooster thighs are my first alternative, however chicken followers can use an entire rooster minimize into 10 serving items (with every breast half break up into two items). After browning the breast items, don’t return them to the pan till you flip over the opposite items (with about 20 minutes of cooking time left).


2 teaspoons vegetable oil

eight bone-in, skin-on rooster thighs (about 2½ to three kilos), rinsed, dried, and trimmed

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons butter

Four massive onions, quartered lengthwise and every quarter quartered crosswise (about eight cups)

2 massive bay leaves

1½ tablespoons pressed or grated garlic (about 6 or 7 medium cloves)

1½ tablespoons minced contemporary thyme

1/Three cup chopped contemporary parsley


In a big, straight-sided saute or braising pan (with a canopy) over medium-high, warmth the oil till shimmering. Sprinkle the rooster throughout with salt and pepper, prepare the items pores and skin facet down within the skillet (don’t crowd — work in batches if mandatory), and cook dinner, undisturbed, till pores and skin is crisp and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Flip the rooster and proceed to cook dinner, undisturbed, till second facet is golden brown, about 5 minutes longer, adjusting the warmth if the skillet turns into too scorching. Switch the rooster to a big plate and, if mandatory, repeat with remaining items. When the rooster is cool sufficient to deal with, take away and discard the pores and skin. Take away all however 1 tablespoon of fats from the pan.

Return the pan to medium-high warmth, add 1 tablespoon butter, and soften. Add the onions, bay leaves, and ½ teaspoon salt and cook dinner, stirring and scraping the underside of the pan to dissolve the fond, till the onions start to melt, about 5 minutes. Alter the warmth to medium and proceed to cook dinner, stirring and scraping the underside of the pan often, till very tender and golden, about eight minutes longer. Add the garlic and thyme and cook dinner, stirring, till aromatic, about 1 minute. Add the rooster with its collected juices, burying the items within the onions, and convey to a simmer. Alter the warmth to medium-low, cowl the pan, and simmer gently till the rooster is cooked via and really tender, about 40 minutes, turning the rooster over (and including the breast items, if utilizing) midway via. Leaving the onions and liquid within the pan, switch the rooster to a platter and canopy loosely with foil to maintain heat.

Alter the warmth to medium-high and convey the liquid to a robust simmer. Add ½ teaspoon salt and pepper to style and proceed to simmer, stirring often, to cut back the liquid and focus the flavors, about 5 to six minutes, including any juices collected on the platter about midway via. Take away the bay leaves if desired, and alter the seasoning with salt and pepper if mandatory. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and many of the parsley and stir to soften and incorporate the butter. Pour and scrape the onions and juices over the rooster, sprinkle with the remaining parsley, and serve without delay.

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Rosemary-Smothered Pork Ribs

Serves 4 (two ribs per diner)

Word that these meaty country-style ribs require a for much longer cooking time than the rooster thighs. For those who occur upon some pork rib chops or blade chops, you possibly can use these as an alternative of the ribs, and so they’ll cook dinner considerably quicker (be sure you examine for doneness sooner).

Comply with the recipe for Thyme- Smothered Rooster, making the next adjustments:

1) Substitute eight bone-in country-style pork ribs (about 1 inch thick and eight ounces every; Four kilos complete), patted dry, for the rooster thighs. Brown the ribs as directed, cooking them, undisturbed, till properly browned on the underside, 2½ to 3½ minutes, turning them over, and persevering with to cook dinner, undisturbed, till properly browned on the second facet, 2½ to 3½ minutes longer.

2) After eradicating the browned ribs from the pan, add 2 extra teaspoons of vegetable oil together with the butter and cook dinner the onions as directed.

3) Substitute chopped contemporary rosemary for the thyme.

4) Prepare dinner the ribs within the onion combination till they’re very tender (the tip of a paring knife inserted into the chops will meet little resistance), about 2 to 2½ hours.

5) Leaving the onions and liquid within the pan, switch the ribs to a platter, cowl loosely with foil to maintain heat, and end the dish as directed.


anthony tieuli

To create the particularly massive chopped onion items I like for these dishes, quarter the onions lengthwise, after which quarter every of these quarters crosswise.

Smothered Turnips With Bacon

Makes about eight cups

I like the flavour increase of utilizing rooster broth, however you possibly can substitute water in the event you’d like. Additionally, for an additional candy and tart dimension of taste, attempt including a big apple, peeled, cored, and minimize into chunks the identical measurement because the turnip items, within the final Four minutes of cooking.

Four slices bacon (about Four ounces), minimize into ¼-inch items

2 medium onions, quartered lengthwise and every quarter quartered crosswise (about 3½ cups)

Salt and floor black pepper

Pinch cayenne pepper

2 teaspoons sugar, or extra to style

1 cup low-sodium rooster broth, or extra as mandatory

2½ kilos turnips (about 5 to six medium, about Three inches in diameter), peeled and minimize into 1-inch items (about eight cups)

¼ cup chopped contemporary parsley

½ cup thinly sliced scallions, white and inexperienced elements (about Four medium)

In a big, heavy, straight-sided saute or braising pan (with a canopy) over medium warmth, fry the bacon, stirring often, till bacon is crisp and the fats has rendered, about eight minutes. With a slotted spoon, switch bacon to paper towels to empty. Pour off all however 1½ tablespoons of the bacon fats, return the pan to medium warmth, add the onions and ½ teaspoon salt, and cook dinner, stirring and scraping the underside of the pan often, till very tender, about 10 minutes. Add the cayenne and sugar and cook dinner, stirring, till aromatic, about 40 seconds. Add the broth and stir and scrape the underside of the pan to dissolve the fond. Add the turnips, ½ teaspoon salt, and floor black pepper to style, stir, and convey to a robust simmer.

Alter the warmth to low, cowl the pan, and cook dinner, stirring typically to advertise even cooking, till turnips are tender and many of the liquid has evaporated, about 12 to 16 minutes, including extra broth close to the top if the pan seems to be dry. Uncover the pan, add reserved bacon, parsley, and many of the scallions, and stir. Alter the seasoning with salt, floor black pepper, and sugar, if mandatory. Scrape the combination right into a serving bowl if desired, sprinkle with remaining scallions, and serve.

Adam Ried seems often on America’s Take a look at Kitchen. Ship feedback to [email protected].

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