Poulet Saint-Valentin

(Chicken St. Valentine)

St. Valentine Chicken

February 14: Feast Day of St. Valentine

We tend to avoid going out to dinner on Valentine’s Day when it is crowded and less intimate. One alternative to celebrating this day with a special significant other is to cook a romantic meal at home—because home is where the heart is, and sometimes the way to someone’s heart is through the stomach! For us, we would prepare our favorite foods or cook poulet Saint-Valentin for the feast day of the legendary saint of love. Though this is a rich-tasting chicken and rice dish, the ingredients are more economical than what cost-conscious couples might spend on a complete meal at a fancy restaurant. Try this traditional poulet Saint-Valentin for a deliciously different dish on Valentine’s Day.


(Adapted from Cooking with the Saints by Ernst Schuegraf)

For the chicken

  • 1 roasting chicken (we used 4 chicken thighs)
  • ¼ cup (½ stick) butter, unsalted
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • ½ cup dry white wine
  • 1 cup milk (we used lactose-free lowfat milk)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice

For the rice

  • ½ cup rice, uncooked
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 4 tablespoons ham, diced
  • 2 tablespoons parsley, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons butter


In a large skillet, brown the chicken in butter. Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg and paprika. Drain the grease, leaving half in the pan to mix with the flour. Pour in the wine and milk to make a sauce. Cover the skillet, lower the heat and simmer until the chicken is cooked through. Remove the chicken from the skillet and set aside. Mix the lemon juice into the sauce. Boil for two minutes to reduce and thicken it before serving over the chicken.

St. Valentine Chicken

Meanwhile, in a saucepan, combine the rice with the chicken stock and cook on medium-low heat until the rice has absorbed all the liquid. Stir in the ham, parsley and butter. Continue to cook until the rice is tender. Serve on a plate beside the chicken. Pour some of the gravy on the chicken and garnish with additional parsley (optional).

St. Valentine Chicken


  • If using a whole roasting chicken, cut into manageable parts for cooking.
  • Adjust the taste of the seasonings accordingly. We prefer less pepper and nutmeg in this dish. The paprika adds a rich red color to the sauce.
  • If doubling the rice recipe, reduce the chicken stock ½ – 1 cup. Cook this simultaneously with the chicken.
  • Happy Valentine’s Day with love from Highlander and Islander!