December 29, 2014

Quick-Braised Chicken with Fennel and Endive

It is officially winter, and I have comfort food on the brain.  I cannot for the life of me figure out how I found this recipe, but it was probably from some one-pot meal round-up which I always love because who wants to clean more than one pot?  

Other things that I liked about this: I had never used endive in a soup before, I am slightly obsessed with fennel, and I love anything with white wine and cream, so this was a no brainer.  

This actually isn't a soup, but because I used boneless/skinless chicken thighs, I probably should have used more or reduced the liquid a bit more.  We ate it just as is with some bread, but it would be great over mashed potatoes, pasta, or rice to soak up the yummy juices.  If I make this again, I would add some mushrooms and saute some of the veggies a bit, maybe caramelize the fennel.  The endive was great, it held a bit of crunch and surprised me!

In any case, this was super tasty and really hit the spot, as far as winter comfort goes.  Here is the recipe as I made it.

Quick-Braised Chicken with Fennel and Endive
Serves 4

2 pounds skinless/boneless chicken thighs
2 Tbls butter 
1 Tbls canola oil
2 medium fennel bulbs
4 heads belgian endive
1 large shallot
4 small carrots (optional)
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup Italian parsley
salt & pepper to taste

Sprinkle chicken with 1 tsp. each salt and pepper. In a dutch oven over medium-high heat, melt 1 Tbsp butter with the oil. Add chicken in a single layer and cook, without moving, until browned underneath, about 5 minutes. Turn over and cook until second side is lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate, drain fat from pan. (This is where I wish I would have browned the veggies up a bit but it did not even occur to me.)

While the chicken is browning, trim fennel bulbs (reserve 1/4 cup fronds) and cut bulbs into quarters, core and thinly slice. Trim ends of endive and quarter heads length­wise. Chop shallot. chop carrots into bite sized chunks.

Return pan to medium-high heat. Add wine and broth and stir, scraping bottom, to release browned bits from pan. 

Reduce heat to a simmer.  Add chicken, fennel, endive, shallot, carrots and re­­maining butter. Cover and let simmer, stirring occasionally, until chicken is cooked through, about 10-15 minutes.

Add cream to pan, increase heat to high, and cook uncovered, stirring, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon into a shallow bowl and sprinkle with parsley and reserved fennel fronds.

2014-12-09 Quick Braised Chicken 008

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