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Garlicky Chicken Thighs

Try to buy locally raised free-range poultry because it’s tastier and more humanely raised. Here, chicken thighs are used in a dish that requires a minimum of attention from the cook. Once you have browned the thighs and briefly cooked the aromatics on the stovetop, the oven does the rest of the work.

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed of excess skin and fat
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. finely chopped yellow onion
  • 5 garlic cloves, peeled but left whole
  • 3 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 Tbs. dry white wine
  • 1 tsp. white wine vinegar

Directions:

Preheat an oven to 325°F.

Pat the chicken thighs dry with paper towels and season generously with salt and pepper. In an ovenproof sauté pan over high heat, warm the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the chicken, skin side down, and sear until golden brown, about 4 minutes. Do not turn the pieces. Using tongs, transfer the chicken to paper towels to drain.

Pour off most of the fat from the pan and return it to medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic, thyme and bay leaf and sauté until the vegetables are just beginning to color, about 4 minutes. Pour in the wine and vinegar and stir with a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits on the pan bottom. Return the chicken thighs, skin side up, to the pan, cover and transfer to the oven. Bake until the chicken is very tender, about 40 minutes.

Transfer the chicken to individual plates. Remove the bay leaf and discard. Spoon the braising liquid and garlic cloves over the chicken and serve immediately. Serves 2.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Two in the Kitchen, by Christie Dufault & Jordan Mackay (Weldon Owen, 2012).