I’m often in amazement of the simple meals I manage to put together. Really, did I just make something taste freakin’ amazing out of the humble crap I found in my fridge? When I found myself with some defrosted chicken thighs, a half bottle of riesling and a bit of heavy cream, I saw a recipe that looked like it would be an ideal fit. Chicken braised in wine, accompanied by root vegetables and kissed with cream. Perfect comfort food for a chilly evening.
Now the photos don’t do this meal any justice. Fall and winter evenings with dim lighting do not make for appetizing or tantalizing shots. Instead you get those weirdly orange photos that look more at home in a thrifted cookbook from the 1970s. But that’s okay because you’ll just have to take my word that this meal was incredible. In fact, I think it’s the best single meal I’ve ever ever ever cooked in my life. High praise indeed. This meal was so good it should have been shared with friends or at least with a little candlelight and cloth napkins.
It’s humble in it’s main ingredients: chicken thighs, carrots, shallots, potatoes. But it’s the riesling and cream that make you want to shout out to the world. So go on, pat yourself on the back and dig in.
chicken thighs in riesling
(adapted from Gourmet)
1 serrano pepper, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 t oregano
1/2 lemon, juiced
1/2 t ground cumin
4 skinless chicken thighs
salt & pepper
1 T olive oil
1 T butter
4 large shallots, roughly chopped
4 medium carrots, cut into 2 inch long rounds
1/2 – 3/4 c riesling
4 potatoes, cut into quarters
1/4 c heavy cream
1/2 lemon, juiced
1. Rinse and pat dry chicken thighs and add them to a bowl with the garlic, serrano peppers, oregano, cumin and lemon juice. Stir and let sit for 30 minutes. Heat olive oil over med-high heat, and add in chicken and marinating liquid. Brown chicken on all sides. Remove from pot and set aside.
2. Heat butter and saute shallots and carrots for a few minutes and add chicken back into the pot. Pour riesling over top and cover over med-low heat until chicken is cooked through, about 30 minutes or so.
3. Meanwhile, cook potatoes separately in boiling water until just tender. Drain and add to the chicken pot. Add in heavy cream and lemon juice, stirring gently so everything gets coated. Serves 2 very hungry people or 4 people with small appetites.