Lush Life

To be a lush chef, does not mean to drink in excess - this can result in scary fires and bad dishes. A lush chef is one who enjoys gourmet cooking/baking, often with fresh ingredients and the smart use of one's home bar. If there happens to be half a bottle of beer, a glass of wine, or a sip of brandy left over...well, one cannot be wasteful. I give you permission to imbibe.

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The Lush Chef
Twitter: @thelushchef Provenance: Santa Monica Dish: Coq au Vin Spirit: Whiskey Wine: Malbec Beer: Hefeweizen Farmer's Market: Santa Monica on Main Street
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May 14, 2013

Braised Chicken & Kale in White Wine

Libations used: 1 cup white wine...
Libations left over: Pretty much the whole bottle, so pour yourself a glass while the chicken is braising or serve with dinner...
Windy, cool spring days call for braising, especially when it's a lazy Sunday.  This is one of my favorite ways to cook meats, because it makes everything so tender and it's pretty much a hands-off process —perfect for dinner parties.  This Braised Chicken & Kale in White Wine from Sweet Sugar Bean is incredibly easy and flavorful, with the paprika giving it a nice, smokey punch.  A friend of mine had brought back some smoked paprika for me from Hungary, so I had been looking for a recipe that would really highlight it.  The chicken just completely falls off the bone and the kale tastes so yummy after it's been simmering in the braising liquid.  Use a dry white wine like a chardonnay, pour yourself a glass after you pour some in the pot, and sit back while that Dutch oven does it's thing.

Braised Chicken & Kale in White Wine - serves 4-5
  • 10 chicken pieces - drumsticks and thighs
  • 2 Tbs paprika
  • Salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbs olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup dry white wine (I used Toasted Head Chardonnay)
  • 3 sprigs rosemary
  • 3 sprigs thyme
  • 1 large bunch of kale, with the center rib removed and cut into 1 inch strips
  • 2 Tbs maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
- Generously sprinkle salt, pepper and paprika on both sides of the chicken, rubbing the spices in.
- In a large Dutch oven or skillet, heat the 2 Tbs of olive oil over medium heat.
- Place the chicken pieces in the Dutch oven skin side down and brown both sides.  Don't crowd the chicken, so brown them in two batches.
- Remove the chicken onto a large plate and set aside.
- Add the onion and garlic to the Dutch oven, and sauté until softened and translucent.
- Return the chicken to the Dutch oven and add the broth, wine and herbs and bring to a boil.
- Cover and let it simmer for 40 minutes.
- Remove the lid and add the maple syrup and cream.
- Gently stir in the kale and let the sauce reduce for about 15 minutes.
- Spoon some of the braising liquid over the chicken and kale when serving.