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Balsamic Braised Chicken & Charred Green Beans

I've been making this recipe for a long time. It is so simple and it is so tasty.  I'm such a sucker for balsamic vinegar. There's no need to use expensive stuff here - the cheap stuff will do.  Just be sure that it is a good tasting cheap balsamic.  If it doesn't taste good to start, it won't taste good once it's reduced.

Balsamic Braised Chicken Thighs (Health Magazine)

1 lb chicken thighs
salt/pepper
2 T olive oil
1/4 c shallots, minced
3 sprigs fresh thyme
1/4 c red wine
3/4 c balsamic vinegar
1/4 c chicken stock
1/4 c honey
1 bay leaf

Preheat oven 350.  Salt and pepper the chicken thighs.  In a skilled add olive oil and brown the thighs on both sides (3-5 minutes). Remove from pan.  Add the shallots and thyme to skillet and cook until shallots are tender but not browned. Add wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up the chicken bits. Cook until the wine evaporates and you can hear the shallots begin to sizzle again. Add chicken, balsamic vinegar, chicken stock, honey, and bay leaf. Bring to a boil on top of the stove.  Cover and bake in the oven for 15 minutes.  Uncover and turn chicken over. Cook for an additional 15 minutes.  Remove chicken from skillet and cook sauce on high heat until thickened and reduced by about half. Place chicken back in skillet and reheat for 1-2 minutes.

I also went with these pan charred green beans as a side. They had a real nice smoky taste. They were easy enough to make. My only regret was that I used Griselda for the chicken. I think, the green beans would have turned more charred in the cast iron. I used haricot verts so the cooking time was a little less.

Also instead of using cider vinegar I used Kressi - seasoned vinegar from Switzerland. I got turned onto it when I read The Man Who Ate the World - in Search of the Perfect Dinner by Jay Rayner. He raved and raved about this vinegar.  He said he always brings back a bottle when he goes to Switzerland or will ask others to bring back some (sounds like me with chocolate). I just had to get some and try it.  It is really good and adds a slightly different taste to vinaigrettes and mayonnaise. I totally get why he raved about it. It is now a staple in the pantry.


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