Sunday, March 28, 2010

Garlic-Braised Chicken with Olives and Mushrooms

Can anything with at least 16 cloves of garlic be bad? I say no - especially if it's roasted. And even through it's braised, the garlic turn out soft and sweet, just like it was roasted. In fact, one of my family members said "I like the little white mushrooms" because they aren't used to eating whole cloves of garlic and didn't recognize them. But it was the garlic and I agree, it added alot of nice flavor. And of course the house smelled wonderful too.

I was a bit curious about this recipe because it is a braising technique but uses so little liquid. But it turned out just fine. I did end up having to cook the chicken closer to 30 minutes, maybe because I didn't have the burner turned up high enough.

The flavors are gentle but super tasty. I left the olives whole because it looked prettier that way. And there is a wonderful sauce so make sure to serve this with some type of side or crusty bread to soak it up. We ate it with farro.

Garlic-Braised Chicken with Olives and Mushrooms
Serves 4

1 small chicken (about 2½ pounds), cut into pieces
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
2 heads garlic (at least 16 cloves), smashed and peeled
10 ounces cremini mushrooms, cleaned, trimmed, and halved
½ cup white wine
½ cup green olives (preferably picholine), pitted or left whole
1/3 cup chicken stock

Heat a large straight-sided skillet (about 12 inches) over medium-high heat. While it's heating, season chicken with salt and pepper. Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan and swirl. Add chicken, skin side down. Let brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Remove chicken from pan; set aside.

Add 1 teaspoon oil to pan, followed by garlic and mushrooms; let brown, stirring occasionally, 5 to 6 minutes.

Add wine to mushrooms and garlic and bring to a boil, then cook for 1 minute. Return chicken to pan.

Add olives and chicken stock to pan; bring to a boil, then reduce heat. Cover; simmer until chicken is cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes.

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