Do you want to know what it is?
Of course you do. Who doesn’t want to hear a secret?
It has to do with chicken skin. I know. Not exactly juicy in the way you’d want juicy to read in regards to a secret but hey, this is a cooking blog.
So here it is. I had a goal over the last month. It was to figure out how to get that perfectly browned skin on chicken before sending it into the oven to finish off. I was always slightly disappointed in mine. Tasty? Yes. Perfect? No. After years of cooking, reading recipes, and watching cooking shows I felt I was brainwashed to believe that a screaming hot pan equals that perfectly crisp skin. And while yes, I always got some color, it didn’t have that crackle snap pop that I was looking for.
Thank you, Bon Appetit.
They advised to start your chicken, skin side down, in a room temperature skillet with a very low amount of oil. Who knew? As the pan warms up the fat on the chicken skin renders creating that crackling sound that can only lead to extremely tasty things.
Finally, my end result photograph matches the beautiful recipe photograph. And hey, let’s not forget this is one killer recipe – minimal flavors, maximum taste, and that perfect crunch of skin that I’ve been longing for oh so long.
- 1 lemon
- 4 large boneless chicken thighs
- 3 tsp olive oil, divided
- 3 springs oregano
- 1 TBS minced shallot
- 1/2 garlic clove, minced
- 1/8 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 cup chicken stock
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Thinly slice half of the lemon, discarding any seeds. Cut remaining half of the lemon into 2 wedges. Pat your chicken dry and season with salt & pepper.
- Coat a large room temperate skillet with 1 tsp olive oil. Add chicken, skin side down. Place skillet over medium heat and cook, letting skin render and brown, and pouring off excess fat to maintain a thin coating in the pan, until chicken is cooked halfway through - roughly 10 minutes.
- Scatter half of lemon slices over chicken and half on the bottom of the skillet. (The lemon slices on top of the chicken will soften, the ones on the bottom will caramelize). Transfer to the oven, leaving chicken skin side down, and roast until chicken is cooked through - roughly 6-8 minutes.
- Transfer chicken pieces, skin side up, and lemon slices from the bottom of the pan to a platter and tent with foil. (Leave the softened lemon slices in the pan for seasoning). Return skillet to medium heat. Add oregano, shallot, garlic, and red pepper flakes; cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 1 minutes.
- Add wine, cook until reduced by half, about 1-2 minutes. Add broth, cook until thickened, about 3 minutes. Season the sauce with the juice of 1 lemon wedge, salt & pepper. Taste to adjust and use the additional lemon wedge, if needed. Drizzle the sauce with the remaining 2 tsp of olive oil.
- Return the chicken to the skillet skin side up to warm. Serve topped with caramelized lemon slices and plenty of that delicious sauce.