Tiny New York Kitchen: Nana’s Smothered Chicken


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By Victoria Hart Glavin of Tiny New York Kitchen

This is a straightforward chicken recipe that is a staple in Southern kitchens. Essentially shallow-fried chicken slow cooked in a brown onion gravy. I like to serve over buttery mashed potatoes.


  • 1 Cup Unbleached Flour
  • 3 Pounds Chicken Pieces (Skin On)
  • 1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt
  • 1 Teaspoon Freshly Ground Pepper
  • 1/4 Cup Vegetable Oil
  • 3 Strips Bacon (Chopped)
  • 2 Tablespoons Bacon Grease
  • 2 Medium Onions (Chopped)
  • 3 Celery Ribs (Chopped)
  • 1 Cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 1/2 Cup Amber Beer
  • 1 Tablespoon Hot Sauce
  • 1 Bunch Green Onions (Finely Chopped)

Place flour in shallow bowl. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Dredge lightly in flour. Shake off any excess.

In heavy pan or Dutch oven, sauté bacon pieces over a medium-high heat for 5 minutes. Stir constantly. Remove bacon pieces and transfer to paper towels. Leave bacon grease in pan.

Add vegetable oil with bacon grease. Working in batches, brown chicken until golden on both sides. Remove chicken pieces to platter and set aside.

Finish cooking remaining chicken.

When all pieces are browned, cook onions in remaining oil and grease over

medium heat for 8 minutes. Add celery and cook for another 5 minutes. Add cooked bacon pieces and chicken pieces back to bottom of pan. Add chicken stock and beer. Keep chicken pieces mostly submerged.

Bring mixture to gentle boil. Cover and reduce heat to low for 1 hour. You will want meat to separate easily from the bone. Stir in hot sauce and green onions before serving.

Ladle chicken and gravy over rice or mashed potatoes. Serves 4.


Victoria Hart Glavin has been cooking and writing recipes since she was a teenager. Originally from Nebraska, her appreciation for culinary technique took off when she moved to Lyon, France.

While living in France, Victoria studied French cooking from an expert Lyonnais chef. Victoria learned to love the local culture of preparing and enjoying fresh, seasonal foods. While in France, Victoria experienced the joys of shopping for local produce at the market and preparing fresh foods simply and beautifully in order to enhance the experience of the table. During her time in France, she says she “learned how to squeeze tomatoes at the local market” and “took everything in by osmosis.”

Currently, Victoria creates tasty treats in her tiny kitchen, in New York City, for all to enjoy and on weekends she explores Fairfield County where has a second home. Victoria has shared her recipes with others and now you can enjoy the Tiny New York Kitchen recipe collection, too!  Victoria is a member of Culinary Historians of New York and a member of the Association for the Study of Food and Society.