Monday, November 17, 2014

Crispy Chicken and Olives

One of our honeymoon goals was to hit up as many amazing restaurants as possible. Since I don't remember ever being hungry, not even once, on the entire trip I'd say we succeeded! We were very lucky to visit three Thomas Keller places. Every morning a heavenly basket of pastries and breakfast goodies from Bouchon Bakery was delivered to our cottage. TO. DIE. FOR. Our first night in the Napa area we had dinner at Ad Hoc and a couple of days later at Bouchon Bistro. Everything was amazing. Naturally we received two of his cookbooks for Christmas that year. 
Since I've been out of commission for two months my darling Mr. Lawyer decided to give some of the Ad Hoc recipes a try. First up was tackling this braised chicken recipe. I was only able to stomach a few bites but what I had was divine. I was particularly impressed with the braised olives, the saltiness really hit the spot. Mr. Lawyer really liked using our cast iron pan to it's full potential too.
Crispy Braised Chicken Thighs with Olives, Lemon, and Fennel
(From Ad Hoc at Home by Thomas Keller)
*Note the recipe serves 12 so Mr. Lawyer cut it to serve 4*
3 fennel bulbs
12 chicken thighs
Kosher salt
Canola oil
1 cup coarsely chopped onion
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
1/4 cup dry white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc
1 cup Ascolane or other large green olives, such as Cerignola
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
4 fresh or 2 dried bay leaves
4 strips lemon zest
8 thyme sprigs
1 cup chicken stock
About 1/3 cup flat-leaf parsley leaves
1. Cut off fennel stalks. Trim bottom of bulbs and peel back the layers until you reach the core; reserve the core for another use. Discard any bruised layers, and cut the fennel into 2-by-1/2-inch batons. You need 3 cups fennel for this recipe; reserve any remaining fennel for another use.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Set a cooling rack on a baking sheet.
3. Season chicken thighs on both sides with salt. Heat some canola oil in a large ovenproof saute pan or roasting rack that will hold all the thighs in one layer over medium-high heat. Add thighs skin-side down and brown on the skin side, about 4 minutes. Turn thighs over and cook for about 1 minute to sear the meat. Transfer to the cooling rack.
4. Reduce heat to medium-low, add onion to the pan, and cook for 1 1/2 minutes. Add garlic and cook for 1 minute. Cook, stirring often, until onion is translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in fennel, turn heat up to medium, and cook, stirring often, until fennel is crisp-tender, about 10 minutes.
5. Pour in wine and simmer for about 2 minutes to burn off alcohol. Stir in olives, red pepper flakes, bay leaves, lemon zest, and thyme, then pour in chicken stock. Increase heat, bring liquid to a simmer, and cook until fennel is tender, about 1 minute.
6. Taste the stock and season with salt as needed. Return chicken to the pan skin-side-up, in a single layer. When the liquid returns to a simmer, transfer to the oven and cook for about 20 minutes, until chicken is cooked through.
7. Turn on the broiler, and put pan under the broiler for a minute or two to crisp and brown the skin. Remove from oven, and transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with parsley leaves.

No comments:

Post a Comment