1 stick margarine or butter
1 lb. white mushrooms, sliced
1 lb. Italian Crimini mushrooms, rough chopped
1 lb. Portabella mushroom, chunked
1/4 cup peanut oil
1 large fryer chicken, cut into pieces
2 tsp. salt
2 tsp. Frank Davis Poultry Seasoning
2 tsp. chili powder
1 pkg. Lipton Golden Onion Soup Mix (both envelopes)
1 cup whole garlic cloves
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup cocktail sherry
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced
1/3 cup fresh parsley, minced
4 cups cooked brown rice
In a heavy 5-quart cast iron Dutch oven, heat the margarine or butter until it fully melts and begins to sizzle. Then drop in all of the chopped mushrooms and stir-fry them over high heat until they wilt and begin to 'sweat' out their natural moisture (which should take about 6 minutes cooking time). At this exact moment, take a spoon or ladle and transfer the mushrooms and juices to a large bowl and set them aside momentarily.
Next, pour the peanut oil into the Dutch oven and bring it to medium-high heat. In the meantime, skin the chicken pieces and thoroughly wash them in cool running water. Then pat them dry with several thick paper towels and liberally season them with the salt, black pepper, poultry seasoning, and chili powder. Then, without overcrowding the Dutch oven, fry down all the chicken pieces a few at a time to seal in the juices. When they're nicely browned, take a pair of tongs, remove them from the pot, and set them aside in a shallow baking pan.
Now you're ready to put the dish together. First, spoon about a third of the mushrooms and juices back into the Dutch oven. Then place a layer of the browned chicken on top of the mushrooms. Then scatter a third of the garlic cloves. Then repeat the process mushrooms , chicken, garlic cloves, onion soup mix twice more, so that you end up using all the ingredients in three layers. Oh and once you have everything put together, drip in the two bay leaves and evenly drizzle on the sherry so that it trickles through the layers.
All that's left at this point is to put the lid on the Dutch oven, turn the fire down to low, and simmer the pot for about an hour and a half or until the chicken looks like it wants to fall apart. When you're ready to eat, dish up a couple of pieces of chicken per person and serve them alongside a mound of steamed brown rice, topped with a ladle full of the natural mushroom-chicken gravy, and accompanied by a cold cucumber and tomato salad. A little minced parsley and thinly sliced green onions make a perfect garnish.
For a little thicker gravy, remove the chicken from the pot, increase the heat to high, and whisk a little more cornstarch and water into the natural pot drippings.