Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Braised Chicken and Kale with Paprika & White Wine

You know you are having a good day when a box of gorgeous cookware arrives on your doorstep.  What makes it even better is when the cookware is complimentary.   See, in a few short days I'll be on my way to the first ever Food Bloggers of Canada conference, and the kind people at Nordic Ware are one of the generous sponsors.  So generous they sent each attendee 3 pieces of their prime stuff.  Pretty cool, hey?  I can't tell you how excited I am to go to this conference!  Finally meeting fellow food-obsessed bloggers, face to face, is going to be nothing short of mind-blowing.  Plus I'll get to reconnect with those I've met before, and have a good ol' catch up.  It's going to be all kinds of awesome.  This conference couldn't come at a better time - I'm ready to be inspired, entertained, and educated.  I'm ready to shake out the winter cobwebs, see another part of this great country, and make new friends.  This is the breather I've been waiting for.  And seeing as there is still a massive amount of snow (yes, in April!) in the yard, I think if I don't see green soon I may just scream.

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.   


  1. I'm going to put this on the table tonight Renee! This looks fantastic!! YUM! Have fun at the conference :)

  2. 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!

  3. Renee! This looks delicious. Have an amazing time, glad you are getting away from the snow!

  4. Have a wonderful time! I will want to hear all about it when you get back.

  5. 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 x

  6. Stacy - Thanks lady! I totally will :)
    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 :)

  7. Seriously this looks too incredible. I want to try this for dinner this weekend.

  8. I can't wait to try this recipe this week! I love finding new ways to prepare kale, so thank you for the inspiration!
    Do you think the cream is absolutely necessary? Would milk and/or butter help?

  9. What could I use instead of wine? This looks tasty!


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