JBF Award winner Naomi Pomeroy advises that you should serve this rustic one-pot meal directly out of the Dutch oven in which it is cooked. If you don't have a Dutch oven, Pomeroy suggests searing the chicken in a large sauté pan, transfering it to a roasting pan to finish cooking, and then serving it in a casserole dish.
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 3 cups roughly chopped yellow onions, cut into 11/2-inch pieces
- 1 1/2 cups sliced, peeled carrots, cut on the bias into 3-inch pieces
- 1 1/2 cups roughly chopped celery, cut into 2-inch pieces
- 10 cloves garlic
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 3 thyme sprigs
- 2 fresh or 4 dried bay leaves
- 12 bone-in, skin-on room temperature chicken thighs
- 2 to 3 tablespoons salt
- 3 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
- 4 cups homemade stock or other high-quality stock
- 1 cup dry white wine
In a large Dutch oven, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium heat. Add the onions, carrots, and celery and sauté for 6 to 7 minutes, until the vegetables get some color. Add the garlic, porcini, thyme, and bay leaves and mix to combine. Turn off the heat but leave the Dutch oven on the burner.
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Season each chicken thigh with 1/2 to 3/4 teaspoon salt (depending on its size; a large thigh will weigh about 10 ounces and a small one about 6 ounces) and 1⁄4 teaspoon pepper.
Heat a black steel pan over high heat until very hot. Add 1 tablespoon of the oil and heat until the surface is rippling but not smoking. Working in batches to avoid crowding the pan, add 4 chicken thighs, skin side down, and lower the heat slightly, to medium-high. Weight down the thighs with a heavy plate to create an even sear across the entire surface and cook for 5 to 6 minutes, until evenly golden but not too dark in any spots. Check after the first 1 to 2 minutes to ensure no black spots are forming and lower the heat as needed. Place the thighs, skin side up, in a single layer in the Dutch oven and repeat two more times with the remaining oil and chicken thighs, rinsing the pan and wiping it completely dry after each batch.
In a saucepan over medium heat, bring the stock and wine to a simmer. Pour the stock mixture into the Dutch oven; the edges of the chicken should be submerged but the skin should be exposed. It’s important not to cover the chicken skin completely or it won’t get crisp.
Cover the Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid (or with aluminum foil if using a roasting pan), place in the oven, and cook for 1 1/4 hours, or until the chicken is completely tender. Turn up the oven temperature to 400°F, remove the cover, and continue to cook until the chicken skin is crisp, about 15 minutes.
Remove the pot from the oven, discard the thyme sprigs as best you can, and serve directly from the pot.
Taste & Technique: Recipes to Elevate Your Home Cooking by Naomi Pomeroy with Jamie Feldmar.