Saturday, April 20, 2013

Braised Chicken, Mediterranean Style

This is the second Saturday in a row that I have made a recipe from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything The Basics. This was delicious. The sauce was so crisp and flavorful. It was not heavy like a Cacciatore, which is what I was planning on making tonight.

Braised Chicken, Mediterranean Style, from Mark Bittman's How to Cook Everything The Basics, (with my notes added)

Ingredients -
2 tbsp olive oil
1 whole cut-up chicken or about 3 pounds parts
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 medium onions, chopped
2 anchovy fillets or 1 tbsp drained capers, optional (I used the capers)
1 tsp. minced garlic (I did not add this)
1 28 ounce can diced tomatoes (do not drain) (I used the Fire Roasted tomatoes)
1/2 cup dry white wine, chicken stock or water (I used the wine)
1 cup Nicoise or kalamata olives, pitted
1 tbsp fresh thyme leaves or 1 tsp dried
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley leaves for garnish (I forgot to add this!)

Method -
Put the oil in a large skillet over medium-heat. When it's hot, add the chicken, skin side down. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook, undisturbed but adjusting the heat so the chicken sizzles but doesn't burn, until the pieces release easily from the pan, 5 to 10 minutes. Then turn and rotate them every few minutes to brown them evenly. As the chicken pieces brown, after another 5 to 10 minutes remove them from the pan.

Reduce the heat under the skillet to medium and pour or spoon off all but 2 tablespoons of the fat. Add the onions and anchovies or capers stirring frequently, until the onions soften (and if using the anchovies until they break up), 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and tomatoes and turn up the heat just a little. Cook until the mixture starts to bubble and the tomatoes thickens a bit, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the olives and thyme along with some pepper. (The olives are so salty that you may not need to add more salt, but if you do, you can always add it later.) Return the chicken pieces to the pan, tucking them into the sauce a bit. Adjust the heat so the liquid bubbles gently but steadily, then cover the skillet.
Cook, checking every 5 minutes to turn the pieces, until the chicken is tender and cooked through, 20 to 30 minutes, adding a tablespoon of liquid if the sauce looks too dry. The meat is done when a quick-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 155-165˚F. Remove the chicken from the pan and taste the sauce; adjust the seasoning, spoon it over the chicken, garnish with parsley, and serve.

For I side dish I made some orzo and added frozen baby peas along with some Parmesan cheese and butter. It looked very springy, even though the temperatures are dropping!


Catherine said...

Dear Lucia, This is just pure joy. It is perfect with a nice piece of Italian bread.
I hope all is well with you. Have a beautiful Sunday. Blessings dear. Catherine xoxo

Lucia from Madison said...

Thank you Catherine. Yes the Italian bread should be listed in the ingredient list!