Inspired by Simon and Garfunkel's "Scarborough Fair", this chicken stew is cooked in apple cider and flavored with parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme.

Scarborough Fair Chicken Stew

Multiply the ingredients to cook a large pot of Scarborough chicken stew and serve it over the holidays! Make it a day or two ahead then reheat gently for even better flavor.
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes
Servings 3
Author Connie Veneracion


  • 900 grams chicken pieces bone in and skin on
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil not extra virgin
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 1 teaspoon garlic minced
  • 1 stalk parsley chopped
  • 2 sage leaves thinly sliced
  • 2 sprigs rosemary (leaves only) chopped
  • 1 sprig thyme (leaves only) chopped
  • 1 and 1/2 cups apple cider (NOT apple cider vinegar)
  • 1 large carrot cut into wedges
  • 1 large bell pepper cut into wedges


  • Wipe the chicken pieces dry with paper towels.
  • Place the chicken in a bowl. Add salt and pepper. Mix well. Cover the bowl and marinate the chicken in the fridge for at least two hours.
  • Place the chicken in a resealable bag. Add the flour. Shake to coat each piece. Take the chicken out of the bag, shaking off excess flour.
  • Heat the butter and olive oil in a pan. 
  • Brown the chicken pieces just until a light crust forms. If your pan is not so wide, you may need to do this in batches. Scoop out the chicken as they brown and move to a plate.
  • In the remaining oil, saute the onion, garlic, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme with a sprinkle of salt and pepper until softened and aromatic.
  • Pour in the apple cider and scrape the bottom of the pan to loosen bits stuck on it. Bring to a gentle boil.
  • Return the chicken pieces to the pan. Scatter the carrot and bell pepper wedges over them.
  • Cover the pan, lower the heat and cook the chicken for 30 to 40 minutes (depending on the size of the chicken pieces). Taste the sauce halfway through the cooking time and add more salt and pepper, if needed.
  • To serve, place three or four chicken pieces in a bowl. Ladle sauce around them. Add carrot and bell pepper wedges. Optionally, garnish with a sprig or two of rosemary and a bit of chopped parsley.