Friday, July 30, 2010

Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic

I'm sure most of you have seen this recipe from Ina Garten. It's one of the episodes of Barefoot Contessa that is always on repeat on the Food Network. I really like this recipe because not only is it delicious, it's pretty easy. It does not require a lot of last minute work. So, it's great for company as I can prepare it ahead of time, and spend the evening with my guests- not in the kitchen. My Great Aunt and Uncle were here on vacation, and we wanted to have them over before they left town. Since weekends are pretty busy, we decided to have them over on a weeknight. Which is great and all, but 7 people for dinner on a weeknight can be a bit stressful. So, I made this recipe the night before! It warmed up beautifully. I served it with salad, a vegetable tian, and an angel food cake with strawberry compote for dessert. A lovely end to a nice visit with my family!

Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic
adapted from Barefoot Contessa, Food Network

3 heads of garlic, separated (not peeled)
chicken (use whatever you want. I like chicken thighs best for this dish, but add breasts as well)
1 Tbsp. Butter
2 Tbsp. Olive Oil
2 Tbsp. Heavy Cream
11/2 c. White Wine
2 Tbsp. AP Flour
1 Tbsp. Fresh Thyme
Salt and Pepper

Blanche garlic cloves in a pot of boiling water for 1 minute. Remove from water, peel, then set aside.
Heat butter and oil in a heavy pot over medium heat. Liberally season chicken with salt and pepper. Brown chicken in batches to avoid overcrowding the pot. When last batch is browned, remove from the pot. Add the peeled garlic cloves and sauté until they start to brown, about 5 minutes. Add wine and boil mixture for 5 minutes, making sure to scrape up any of the brown bits on the bottom of the pot. Return chicken and any juices that collected at the bottom of the plate to the pot. Add fresh thyme, then cover pot and simmer until your chicken is cooked. Depending on the amount of chicken you are using, this can take anywhere from 30 to 45 minutes. Once the chicken is cooked, take it out of the pot. Remove 1/2 c. of the cooking liquid and whisk in a bowl with the flour. Add the mixture back to the pot and whisk the sauce to make sure that there are no lumps. Add the heavy cream and bring to a boil. Cook for 3 minutes, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the chicken back into the pot and mix with sauce. Serve.

Note: Make sure you plan for your side dishes to be on the lighter side. While the chicken dish isn't too heavy, the cream sauce does give the dish a bit of heft. I wouldn't serve it with pasta or mashed potatoes or anything. Keep it light!

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