I love a good braise - the meat is slowly cooked in a little bit of liquid and it becomes incredibly tender and full of flava. Plus you get to use the cheaper-cuts of meat, which saves you your hard-earned dollars. For this recipe I rubbed really good smoked and sweet paprika on chicken drumsticks and thighs. It's kind of gross, but necessary, to rub the spices on the meat - just be careful and wash your hands thoroughly in hot, soapy water afterwards, but you knew that.
Heat olive oil in your braising pan or skillet - I used the Nordic Ware Pro Cast Traditions Aluminum Traditions Braiser, and it worked like a dream. The chicken browned beautifully, cooked evenly and quickly, and hello - no bits stuck on the bottom. Clean up was easy, just in a sink of soapy suds. The pan is durable yet light; I don't feel like I'm getting a workout like with some other heavy cookware. I love that this braising pan cooks like cast iron and looks pretty while sitting on my table too. Okay, back to the chicken. Once it's browned, remove it to a plate, sauté some onions and garlic, then put the chicken back into the pan, with a good glug of white wine, chicken broth, herbs and let it simmer for a about 40 minutes. Yes, those are mismatched socks - but hey it was laundry day.
Once the chicken is fully cooked and practically falling off the bone, stir in the chopped kale, maple syrup and cream. Let the sauce reduce down another 15 minutes, so it's thickens up a bit. There is such a great range of flavours here - sweet, smoky, earthy, and the kale was particularly gorgeous. I wish I would have added more - I couldn't get enough of it! Chicken is always fabulous in a white wine sauce, but the extra kick of paprika really works wonders. Mellow maple syrup marries all of the flavours and I had a little bit of cream that needed using up so it brought a velvet finish to the dish. No cream? No worries, it will be fine without it. Be sure to give a squeeze of fresh lemon and serve with your favourite roasted potatoes.
This space may be quiet for a bit...I'm going to take a few extra days in the Toronto area to visit old friends and bask in the April sunshine where there is no snow on the ground. Without a doubt I'll return fresh and inspired and full of good stories. Until then, xoxo Renée
Braised Chicken & Kale in White Wine
10 chicken pieces - I used drumsticks and bone-in thighs
2 tbsp paprika - I used some smoked and some sweet
kosher salt, ground pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
1 medium onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 cups chicken broth
1 cup dry white wine
3 sprigs rosemary
3 sprigs thyme
1 large bunch kale (or more!), centre rib removed, cut into 1 inch strips
2 tbsp maple syrup
1/4 cup heavy cream
Sprinkle chicken with paprika, salt, pepper and rub all over. Heat oil in your braising pan or large skillet and add chicken pieces skin side down. Do not crowd the pan, so you may have to do this in batches. Brown the chicken turning occasionally, until it's brown on both sides and transfer to plate. This takes about 8 minutes. Add onion and garlic to pan, cook stirring often until softened, about 8 minutes. Return chicken to pan, add broth, wine, herbs and bring to a boil. Cover, and simmer about 40 minutes. Remove lid, stir in the kale, maple syrup and cream, and let the sauce cook down for another 15 minutes. Adjust seasonings with more salt and pepper. Serve with lemon wedges and roasted potatoes. Serves 4-5. Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit, March 2013.
Disclosure: I did receive the Nordic Ware as a gift, and with a review of the product I have a chance to win even more Nordic Ware, which would be absolutely fantastic. But as with anything I review here, I wouldn't tell you about a product unless I absolutely loved it.
I'm going to put this on the table tonight Renee! This looks fantastic!! YUM! Have fun at the conference :)ReplyDelete
Wow Renee, I'm with Stacy Lee, looks like what is on for dinner tonight! Also, have a blast and a well deserved break at your conference....we'll chat on the 24th!ReplyDelete
Renee! This looks delicious. Have an amazing time, glad you are getting away from the snow!ReplyDelete
Have a wonderful time! I will want to hear all about it when you get back.ReplyDelete
I hope you have an amazing time- this looks spectacular- I was just pondering this morning what to do with an enormous bag of kale in the fridge... I have a feeling this is going to be dinner tonight xReplyDelete
Stacy - Thanks lady! I totally will :)ReplyDelete
Candus - sounds great! We'll catch up soon :)
Kate - thank you so much. I'm really looking forward to getting away!
Donna - most definitely:)
Tori - An enormous bag of kale in the fridge is always a good thing :)
Seriously this looks too incredible. I want to try this for dinner this weekend.ReplyDelete
Thank you! Enjoy it!Delete
I can't wait to try this recipe this week! I love finding new ways to prepare kale, so thank you for the inspiration!ReplyDelete
Do you think the cream is absolutely necessary? Would milk and/or butter help?
Hi! Seeing as it is only 1/4 cup of whipping cream, a little goes a long way. I would say yes it is necessary for richness and flavour. Milk will curdle, and butter just wouldn't work in this dish. Thanks for asking.Delete
What could I use instead of wine? This looks tasty!ReplyDelete
Yes, apple cider would be a great substitute for the wine.ReplyDelete
I would like to cut out the fat, can I just leave out the cream or do I need to substitute it for more liquid? Thanks!ReplyDelete
If you're looking to cut out the fat you can omit the cream, though the flavour will be slightly different, and the dish won't taste quite as good. A little fat brings a lot of flavour :)Delete
Could you use boneless skinless chicken breasts instead of the thighs and drumsticks? Thanks! Looks fantastic!ReplyDelete
Hi! Yes, you could use chicken breasts instead of thighs and drumsticks.Delete
Would honey work instead of maple syrup?ReplyDelete
Hi Terri, yes you could use honey instead of maple syrup.Delete
Can you suggest anything to sub for the cream? Can't have any dairy...ReplyDelete
Hi! Try adding a 1/4 cup coconut milk, though the flavour will be a little different.Delete
I just made this dish and included everything you said! Thanks for the inspiration!ReplyDelete
thanks renee.. i love paprika but never use white wine. any alternative for not using white wine?ReplyDelete
You could use chicken stock instead!Delete