Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Balsamic Marmelade-Glazed Chicken Thighs

I'm always on the look out for stove-top meals. I love freeing up my oven for other uses such as sides or, more specifically, tasty apple crisps that bake whilst we supp on the main portion of the meal. The cinnamony goodness reminds the children what awaits them if they finish eating my delicious main course. But I digress. This is an easy dish that looks fancy. Served with a baked potato and some asparagus and you've got a great meal.

I also used this opportunity to harvest some of my rosemary from my garden (which, truth be told, was pretty meagre). I do suggest chopping up the rosemary if you have persons in your homes who don't like seeing 'pine needles' in their food. You still get the wonderful flavour from the herb but less whines at the table.

This is also a more economical dish because it uses chicken thighs. Chicken thighs (and dark meat in general) tend to get a bad rap and I'm not sure why. I find them much more juicy and tender than the much more expensive chicken breasts. I like to buy large packages of chicken thighs (usually from Costco) then divide them up into 8-10 chicken thighs for various recipes. Pop the well-labelled freezer bags (there's that Type A thing again) into my freezer's meat basket (yes, I have a designated meat basket -- Type A!!) and I'm good for several chicken dishes with only one trip to the food store!

Adapted from: Rachael Ray's "Orange Balsamic Chicken with Pecans and Sage Butter Pasta"
Servings: 2-4

2 tbsp olive or vegetable oil
8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
salt and pepper
1 large sprig of fresh rosemary (approximately 2 tsp), chopped (see Note below)
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup orange marmelade
1/2 cup fresh Parmesan cheese, grated

In a large skillet over medium-high heat, pour olive oil and swish around to coat the pan. Season chicken with salt and freshly ground black pepper and add to skillet -- making sure to open up each thigh so they can cook evenly. Sprinkle rosemary on top of the chicken pieces and cook until chicken is crispy and brown (and no longer pink inside) -- approximately 8-10 minutes. Transfer to a dish and cover to keep warm.

Meanwhile, whisk balsamic and marmelade together in the skillet that was used for the chicken. Scrape all the browned bits from the bottom of the skillet (it's not gross, it's flavour!!) and mix well with the balsamic and marmelade mixture. Lower heat and simmer for 1 minute. Return chicken to skillet and coat with the sauce. Serve chicken pieces onto plates, pouring extra glaze over each chicken piece. Sprinkle chicken liberally with fresh Parmesan.

Note: You can use dried rosemary, just decrease the amount to 3/4 tsp.


Mags said...

Love the combination of flavors and I enjoy using chicken thighs instead of chicken breasts for a change. Sounds delicious!

Laurie said...

Thanks Mags. I was intrigued by the different flavours. They came together wonderfully.

I want to try out more recipes like this ... with various flavours that you wouldn't have necessarily put together. Speaking of which, I had a wonderful dinner out on Friday and had a steak topped with a mixture of balsamic (I have an addiction to it), blue cheese and bacon. De-eee-lish. I'm still dreaming of it!! Now to replicate it. Bwah ha ha!

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