What can you do with half a bottle of wine? Use it to braise something! I had chicken and some leftover Zinfandel and the barest hint of an idea.
I love chicken thighs and whole legs were on sale. It only takes a moment to separate the drums and thighs.
This wine was wonderful when we had a glass with dinner a few days before this, but it was sitting and I hated to throw it away.
We got these beautiful fresh root vegetables at the Farmer’s Market — just the thing for a warm winter braise.
The chicken after browning in a good glug of olive oil. I lightly dredged these in flour, but they really didn’t need it.
Once the chicken is browned then the wine, veggies and some broth go in. The whole thing was brought to the boil, covered and the placed in the oven to become meltingly tender.
I decided that I would cook some sort of whole grains to have something the soak up the flavorful juices. Towards the end of last year I was given the opportunity to try a quick-cooking whole grain mix. I decided that they just might do the job.
The variety that I was sent included barley, split peas and lentils. The package stated that it could be cooked in 10 minutes. I cooked it according to the directions and, to make a long story short, it was soupy and mushy. But it did look good in the bowl. I posted a full review on the Raley’s website.
Back to dinner…..
Once the meat and veggies were done, they were removed from the pot and the juices were reduced over high heat until they were about half their original volume.
The meat was fantastic — tender and very flavorful. The root vegetables added sweetness from the carrots and onions and a sharpness from the turnips.
I hope that you decide to try this, perhaps minus the grains or with a different product. I think that next time I’ll leave them off and use the chicken meat to soak up the sauce.
Chicken Thighs Braised in Red Wine
4 large Chicken Thighs, about 1 ½ lbs 1 Large or 2 Small Onions, cut in 1 inch cubes
3 – 4 Carrots, cut in ¾ inch slices 2 – 3 Turnips, cut in ¾ inch cubes
Salt and Pepper 2 Tbls Olive or Canola Oil
1 – 2 Cups Dry Red Wine 1 – 2 Cups Chicken Broth
1 tsp dried Thyme 2 Cups cooked Whole Grains, as desired
Heat the oven to 350F
Heat the oil in a heavy oven-proof dutch oven. Add the chicken thighs, skin side down, and brown well. Turn the chicken over and season well with salt and pepper, as desired. Add the wine and scrape up any bits that might be stuck to the bottom. Add the onions, carrots and turnips as well as enough broth to not quite cover the contents. Sprinkle over the thyme and bring the liquid to the boil. Once the liquid is to the boil, cover the pan and transfer the dutch oven to oven for 40 minutes or until the veggies are tender and the chicken is very well done. Serve with whole grains, if desired.