Recently I was trying to decide how to braise some boneless (and skinless) chicken thighs I had that needed to be cooked. Typically, when I have bone in chicken thighs, I’d do something with tomatoes, white wine and herbs. This time, I wanted to do something different. I came across a recipe from the Dean and Deluca cookbook. I’d never made something from it before, but I figured it was worth a go. The recipe actually turned out to be very similar to the Chicken Caccitore that I made recently (via Fabio from Top Chef).
The recipe calls for a couple ingredients that maybe are a bit uncommon, at least in my cooking. The first isn’t too weird and that was dried porchini mushrooms. I happened to have some, though it called for 1 ounce of them, and I opted for half that. I think it would have done well with some fresh ones. The second, is arrowroot. I knew it was a starchy ingredient, and without it on hand, I tried using corn starch, which seems to turn out fine.
The sauce you get with this dish is rich and flavorful. I didn’t reduce the sauce to make it too think, per the recipe’s instructions, but I think reduce down even more it would act as a glaze and not a sauce. The recipe is below with my changes and a link to the original.
Recipe adapted from Dean and Deluca
6 boneless thighs (I happen to have boneless/skinless – a little less ideal)
1/4 oz dried porcini mushrooms
5 peeled garlic cloves, minced
~1/2 cup flour, for dredging
2 slices thick cut bacon
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 cup red wine, preferably merlot
1/2 cup chicken stock
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar (lesser quality)
1 teaspoon corn starch (dissolved in 2 tsp water)
1 cup chopped canned tomatoes
1 tablespoon aged balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper
In a small bowl, soak porcini mushrooms in 1 cup water for 10 minutes, or until soft.
Season chicken with salt and pepper. Combine half the garlic cloves with a little salt and spread over chicken thigh, mostly on the underneath side (where bones were removed). Let sit for 10 minutes.
Chop bacon and add to a large dutch oven or 3+ quart skillet with lid, over medium-high heat. Cook until bacon is crispy and remove with slotted spoon and set aside.
Dredge chicken in flour, shake of excess, and then place into pan with bacon fat. Cook on each side, over medium-high heat for 2 minutes, just to get a nice golden color. Remove from pan and set aside.
Clear out fat from skillet. Add olive oil and reduce heat to medium-low. Add remaining minced garlic, cook for 1 minute, then add the reserved porcini soaking liquid, wine, stock and 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil for about 5 minutes.
Add cornstarch mixture slowly, stirring while you pour. Stir in tomatoes and add chicken, coat chicken well with sauce. Reduce heat to low and cover for 5 minutes. Remove cover, add bacon, porcini mushrooms and simmer for 10-12 minutes, until sauce begins to thicken slightly, but not too thick.
Serve with salad or vegetables and creamy polenta. Enjoy!!