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Cider-Braised Chicken with Bacon and Apples

Serves: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 8 (4-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, trimmed
  • 3 tart green apple such as Granny Smith, peeled, cored and cut into ½-inch thick wedges
  • 3 ounces (about 5 slices) thick-cut bacon, cut crosswise into ¼-inch slices
  • 1 medium yellow onion, cut into ½-inch dice
  • 1 medium clove garlic, minced
  • ½ cup apple brandy
  • 2 cups apple cider
  • 2 tablespoons whole grain mustard
  • ¼ cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tablespoon finely chopped sage
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Procedures:

This hearty, full flavored dish is complete as a one dish meal—just serve with a loaf of crusty bread.

Place a large Dutch oven on the stove over medium-high heat and add the oil. Pat chicken dry with paper towel and season generously with salt and pepper. When the oil is shimmering, add the chicken, working in batches if necessary and cook until well browned. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

Add the apples to the pot and sauté, stirring frequently until just softened and caramelized, about 5 minutes. Transfer apples to a bowl and reserve.

Add the bacon and onion to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is tender and the bacon fat has rendered, but the bacon is not crisp, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

Add the brandy and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon, until it has reduced by half. Pour in the apple cider and stir with a wooden spoon to incorporate any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Bring to a boil and reduce the liquid by half. Add the chicken back into the pot, cover and simmer until cooked through, about 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the mustard, cream, apples and sage. Simmer, uncovered, for about 10 minutes to allow the sauce to thicken. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

To serve: Divide the braised chicken with apples among 4 warmed dinner plates and serve immediately.

Recipe developed for Sur La Table’s Cooking Classes

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