Saturday, November 11, 2017

Braised chicken and mushrooms in wine sauce for a fall evening #giveaway

This chicken is a variation of something I remember from my childhood, although I’m pretty sure it did not have shallots or wine!  The updated version has no garlic although usually we’re swimming in the stuff.  Instead we relied on shallots which give it a great flavor and aroma.  This week chicken thighs were on sale as were sliced mushrooms. No contest.  We love chicken thighs as they are meaty and juicy.

The results were  perfect for a cool fall night, maybe a few candles, a glass of wine and the fireplace on.  We had friends coming for dinner and made a big recipe, but you can make half. Like most of our recipes, you can add more or use less of any ingredient.  We are nothing if not flexible.

The chicken and sauce easy and inexpensive and it has a wonderful aroma. Plus it gets rid of that bottle of white wine that wasn’t quite finished after it was opened.   Or you could open a new bottle and serve the rest with dinner! 


4 tbsp butter  (more as needed)
3 tbsp oil
16 chicken thighs
4  green onions, sliced – white and green
3 large  shallots - chopped
1 ½ to 2  tablespoons dried thyme  (it would be better with fresh but I was out of luck)
1 tsp Paprika
1 cup white wine
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup flour for dredging
2 tablespoons lemon juice
S & P
1 pound of brown mushrooms, sliced


Sauté the mushrooms with the green onions in half the oil and butter  first and set them aside. I used two pans because there was a lot of chicken.

Add extra butter or oil if you need to.  While the mushrooms are cooking, dredge the chicken in batches in flour and S & P.  I use a zippered bag for dredging a few pieces at a time. It's so easy to clean up after.
Remove mushrooms, add the rest of the oil and butter and brown the chicken a few pieces at a time. Add oil and butter again as needed. Do not crowd.  (Sometimes I don’t have the patience but they’re not as nice if crowded). 

Add the shallots with second batch of chicken.
When browned, return the mushrooms and green onions. Add wine, stock, thyme and paprika.  Bring just to a boil, reduce to minimum. Cover and simmer for about 1 1/2 hours.  Add the lemon when you take the lid off.

Transfer to a platter and pour sauce over. The sauce is (if I do say so myself) AWESOME.

We served this with our fave spinach casserole and French lentil salad. Sometimes we team it with mashed potatoes or pureed cauliflower.

You may be used to us as Victoria Abbott, authors of the book collector mysteries,  but today,  it's Mary Jane Maffini, one half of the collaboration who's doing the talking.  I am letting you know about one of my books that is dear to my heart.  

Today is Remembrance Day here in Canada, a day that is somber and reflective as we think of the many lives lost or ruined by wars and we ponder the courage of those who served. In honor of the day,  I am offering a giveaway.  THE DEAD DON’T GET OUT MUCH is the fifth book in my Camilla MacPhee series and also my favorite and not just because it also includes a ‘trip’ to Italy.  It also tell the story of one veteran who is important in Camilla's life and in the series.

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 Camilla is a feisty lawyer who works as a victims’ advocate in Ottawa, Ontario. Justice is her thing and she never stops until she finds out what’s behind the latest crime in her area.  She may have the world's worst office assistant and a challenging family, but she soldiers on. The Dead Don’t Get Out Much begins at the Remembrance Day ceremonies near Parliament Hill. Mrs. Violet Parnell, a WWII veteran and excellent sidekick is taking part in an event after the ceremony when she gets a shock and claims to have seen a dead man.  Being Mrs. Parnell and pretty well unstoppable, she's soon on her way to Italy to get to the bottom of things. The action continues with Camilla in hot pursuit on an eventful and danger-packed trip to uncover some old secrets.  Mrs. Parnell is one of thousands of Canadian women who went overseas during the second world war, not in combat roles, but in supporting roles as truck drivers, pilots, nurses and other jobs. Of course, these were very dangerous. So many girls from small towns and farms had incredible and difficult experiences as well as adventures.  I hoped to convey something of those experiences in the book.  Plus for years, I had promised Mrs. P that her story would be told and this was her big chance.

Leave a comment saying why you’d like to read this book (Don’t forget to leave your EMAIL address) and your name will be in the draw. Good luck everyone! 

While we're at it here are the books in the Camilla MacPhee series. This series is very well priced now in e-books, but also available in print. 

I hope to connect with you on FACEBOOK. Click to link to Mary Jane Maffini

and click here to find Victoria Abbott. 

Get in on more fun with  our email newsletter.  All you need to do to get on the list is ask us

We're both dying to meet you!


  1. I'd love to read this book, to find out more about the unfolding secrets/mysteries.

  2. I'm currently dressed in an Americal Division polo shirt for my husband's stint in Vietnam, with a USA sargeants army pin and a 7th Cavalry pin. My dad served in the army in WWII; my son in the war in Iraq. So, I have strong feelings about military veterans who have served their countries! I would love to read your book, Mary Jane!

  3. Being Canadian today is meaningful and import. The novel sounds captivating and interests me greatly. What a wonderful series. Thanks. saubleb(at)gmail(dot)com

  4. Thanks for this Remembrance Day ode which I enjoyed. I would love to read this book for the characters, the setting and the story which is unforgettable and enjoyable. The trip to Italy and the bravery is what was normal behavior at that time and I admire all of the men and women. elliotbencan(at)hotmail(dot)com

  5. It seem my family is a military family. Not just my father and step father but also uncles, cousins (one was O.S.S.), great uncles and further back. My three brothers' of course in Nam, and my daughter Sharon (a Ft. Hood graduate) did 2 tours in Afghanistan.

    My family also had many secrets, the biggest having been exactely what some of that cousin's antics were. While on a vacation out to the Finger Lakes region of NY we found the Military Cemetery where he AND his wife were buried. Major Lapiner served not only in WW II but also Korea and Viet Nam. Earning a Purple Heart and a Bronze Star. The biggest surprise was that his wife had her own separate Headstone, being she was also 1st. Lt. G. Lapiner. That was an eye opener. LOL

    We also have a ton of lawyers, a retired Appellate Court Justice and a current sitting Justice in the NY State Supreme Court system.

    I really want to read whey The Dead Don't Get Out Much.

    NoraAdrienne (at) gmail (dot) com

  6. The recipe sounds delicious.
    Yes, it's important not to crowd the pan when browning food. Too much in the pan = steamed, not browned, food.

    I'd love to read this book 1-because you wrote it and I appreciate your writing style 2-for the subject matter
    libbydodd at comcast dot net

  7. I love historical fiction and you book fits that bill. Hope to win and learn from

  8. Just wanted to stop by and say that this book may be my favourite Camilla McFee! Love that book! And that the chicken and mushroom sounds delicious -- one of my very favourite combinations. I am just reheating the leftover chicken thighs from last night -- this time, they are in leek and mustard cream sauce.

    Monika of Manotick

  9. That sauce sounds yummy. I have yet to read any of Camilla's stories. She & her partner Violet sound like they'd be fun to read about.

  10. I would like to read the book bffgecausr it's your favorite and i would like to read more about Camilla and her secrets.

  11. As we here in the States celebrate Veterans Day, I am so thankful for my father and his friends and all those that served, wherever they served. I also think of my mom who was on the other end of the war in Germany. She still says the US troops were the best to all of them. I would love to read your book. kayt18 (at) comcast (dot) net

    1. It is a special day for us as well, so many of my family members have or are serving. This sounds like a great novel! I have not yet read any from this series. Thank you to all who serve! And thanks for the chance to win. jeaniedannheim (at) ymail (dot) com

  12. The recipe sounds delicious! I agree, chicken thighs do have such a good flavor & are more moist than the breast meat. You are a new-to-me author so naturally I'd love to read this book and hopefully add you to my very lengthy favorite author list. Thanks for the chance to win! sxygrndma48{at}yahoo{dot}com

  13. Oh my, I so want to read this book! I enjoy books with adventures during war time. Cherry Ames was a nurse during a war and I loved them. When I was a kid. This been on sounds amazing and its fun when there are secrets too. Here's hoping! Thank you for the chance.

  14. I'm looking forward to reading this's been a while and I might just have to revisit a few of your books. The chicken looks amazing! Thank you for the opportunity. I'm adding both to my lists. Mare Fairchild

  15. Recipe looks good. Book looks better. Would love to read. My bro-in-law was writing about those in supporting roles as truck drivers, pilots when he died. He'd interviewed quite a number of ladies, was putting his notes together when he died. One of the reasons I'd like to read this book. Though fiction. I find the premise of great interest. Della at deepotter (at) peoplepc (dot) com

  16. The Dead Don't Get Out Much will be the first McPhee mystery I've read so I'm really looking forward to it since it is exactly the kind of story I like. It is intriguing to me to learn more about those brave women who left their own country to go to foreign lands which is a major step at any time but is a HUGE decision during war time. I want to know how Ms. P coped, the people she met and the events and emotions she experienced.

  17. I really like braised chicken. It looks delicious.
    browninggloria(at)hotmail(.) com