That half bottle of decent white wine sitting in the fridge since Easter Sunday needed to feel useful again! And as if by magic, this French recipe came my way, courtesy of a site called Pardon your French..
Et – as they say in France – voila! *clicks fingers*
I served this with my Crushed Hot Potatoes, which cook along side this recipe very nicely indeed.
If you haven’t got/don’t fancy wine, please see NOTES 2 below for an easy alternative..
Oh, and did I mention those magic words ‘One Pan’??
- An oven-proof frying pan – big enough to hold all the chicken portions in a single layer. If you haven’t got such a pan, do the prep in a frying pan on the hob, and use a shallow lasagne dish or roasting tray to complete the dish in the oven.
- A medium/large bowl
- 2 plates
- Cooking tongs.
INGREDIENTS: To feed 4: just upsize quantities if you want to feed more..
- 8 chicken thighs, skin-on, bone-in OR 4 skin-on Chicken breast or Chicken Supreme portions
- 4 slices of streaky bacon, cut into pieces.
- Unsalted butter,
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced or grated.
- 12 shallots, peeled and cut into roughly equal sizes. See NOTE 1 for easy peeling instructions!
- 7-8 sprigs fresh thyme – or 1/2 a teaspoon of dried Thyme in my case..
- A generous half glass of dry white wine. *If you don’t have/don’t want wine, please see NOTE 2.
- If you get the chance, and have a suitable spot in your kitchen, bring the chicken and bacon to room temperature.
- When you’re ready to cook, dry the Chicken skin with kitchen paper.
- Season each piece with pepper on both sides. Only add salt if you’re using Wine in the sauce.
- Put all the Shallots into the bowl and fill it with boiling water.
- Heat your oven to 180°C Fan.
- Heat up the frying pan over medium-high heat.
- Add the bacon and dry-fry for about 6-7 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the oil has run out, it’s fully cooked and crisp. As you can see I over cooked mine – but it still tasted fine.
- Remove the bacon to a plate, leaving the bacon fat in the pan.
- Melt a knob of butter in the pan.
- When it sizzles, place the chicken pieces, skin-side down, in the pan.
- Cook for about 8-10 minutes (uncovered) until the chicken skin is golden and slightly crisped.
- Using the tongs, turn the chicken portions over and cook the undersides for 5-8 minutes until half cooked.
- Move the chicken to a plate. Keep the fat in the pan.
- Peel the Shallots – see NOTE 1 below. Cut any large ones in half longways.
- Add another knob of butter to the pan and let it melt.
- Add the shallots – cut side down – and the garlic.
- Cook gently for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the shallots are softened and lightly caramelized.
- Add the sprigs of Thyme, or dried thyme and mix in gently.
- Turn the Shallots over to allow the other side to colour for about 5 minutes. As you turn them over, some of the shallots will separate – this is fine.
- Add the bacon pieces back in now.
- Nestle the chicken pieces back into the pan between the shallots etc.
- Pour over the white wine if using. If not, see NOTE 2 below. Season to taste with extra black pepper if you like, then transfer the pan to the oven for 30 minutes – uncovered.
- After the 30 minutes are up, the dish is ready to serve. It will certainly keep for a few minutes while you crisp up the last of the potatoes..
- ‘Peel the Shallots’: three simple words that don’t go anywhere near describing how difficult it actually is to separate a shallot from its overcoat. Here’s the answer: Put the unpeeled shallots into a bowl, top up with boiling water, and leave for about 5 minutes. Take them out one at at time, and after you’ve cut the top and bottom off, the coats should slip off easily.
- No wine?? Never fear, whether you don’t want to add any wine, or you simply haven’t got any to hand – here’s my solution! Make up half a low salt Chicken stock cube in about 200mls of boiling water, add the juice of half a Lemon, stir well, then add to the pan just before it goes into the oven – it works beautifully, and is just as delicious as the original recipe. Remember though not to add any extra salt to the chicken etc while you’re cooking.
- I served my Crush Hot Potatoes – they are so delicious! – with this, but in the French style, you could just as easily offer some fresh crusty bread.
- As you can see from the pictures, I only had a handful of banana shallots, so I added a few Red Onions as well.
- The wine evaporates off less than you might think, so the jus that comes with this dish isn’t thickened like gravy, but has a really delicious flavour.
- I was thinking as I made this that it was a perfect family dinner, but in it’s own rustic way it’s definitely suitable for a dinner with friends too. It has a simple elegance that makes it a classic French-style dish.