Monday, February 21, 2011

Weeknight Chicken

Hello all! I kind of like these recipe things. So if you don't, I apologize. Today's recipe actually uses something that we raise: chicken! This is a great recipe for our cut up chicken. It is from the most recent Cook's Country Magazine, a magazine I continually highly recommend. Here's what you need:
1 c low-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
1 c white wine
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed (but not minced)
2 tsp minced fresh thyme
3 lbs bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces
salt & pepper
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
2 Tbsp unsalted butter

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Whisk 2 Tbsp broth & cornstarch in small bowl until smooth, reserve. Combine remaining broth, wine, garlic, and thyme in large measuring cup.
Yeah, it doesn't look pretty but it's yummy. In this case I didn't have any white wine but I cook with vermouth and sherry all the time and I had some of that, so this recipe is half a cup of each. It worked great!
Pat chicken dry with paper towels & season with 1/2 tsp salt & 1/4 tsp pepper. Heat oil in large oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Cook chicken, skin side down, until well browned, 6-10 minutes (don't stir or move in this time). Flip and cook until lightly browned on second side, about two minutes.
Slowly pour broth mixture into skillet and bring to a boil. Try not to get the crispy deliciousness on the tops of the chicken wet with the broth.
Transfer skillet to oven and roast until white meat registers 160 degrees and dark meat registers 175 degrees, 12 to 18 minutes. 
Transfer chicken to platter and tent with aluminum foil. Discard garlic. 
Pour pan juices into liquid measuring cup; skim & discard fat. In this case I used one of our chickens, so I just kind of blotted at the top of the cup with a paper towel and called it good (skimming the fat off the top of liquids is not something I'm very good at). Return 1 1/2 cups defatted pan juices to now-empty skillet and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. 
Reduce heat to medium low & simmer until sauce is reduced to 1 cup, 5-7 minutes. 
Add reserved cornstarch mixture and simmer until sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Off heat, whisk in butter. Season with salt & pepper. By the way, all of this is also an excellent way to build any pan sauce. If someone requests it in the comments, I'll share with you how I build pan sauce for steak (which is really good)!
Serve, passing sauce at the table. 

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