The Pioneer Woman Tasty Kitchen
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Braised Chicken Thighs with Leeks

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Level: Easy

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Description

The perfect evening meal for the chilly spring nights that still remain.

Ingredients

  • 2 whole Leeks
  • Olive Oil, As Needed
  • 4 Tablespoons Butter, Divided
  • 8 whole Bone-In, Skin-On Chicken Thighs
  • Salt And Pepper, to taste
  • 1 head Garlic, Cloves Peeled And Whole
  • 1-½ cup Chicken Stock
  • 2 whole Lemons, Halved
  • Fresh Herbs For Sprinkling

Preparation

Preheat oven to 400ºF and a large skillet or braiser to medium heat.

While preheating, prep the leeks. Remove any tough outer stems and leaves, cut leeks in half lengthwise, then thinly slice into half-moon shapes. Add leeks to a bowl and fill with water. Swish the leeks around in the water and let sit for a few minutes; any grit or sand will sink to the bottom. Remove leeks carefully to not disturb the dirt and let dry on a clean kitchen towel.

When pan is hot, add a drizzle of olive oil and 2 tablespoons of the butter. Sprinkle chicken very liberally with salt and pepper and add thighs skin side down to the pan. Let chicken cook undisturbed for 8–9 minutes until chicken skin is brown and crispy. Flip chicken and cook for 5 minutes more, then remove to a plate.

Add leeks and garlic cloves to chicken drippings. Stir for 2 minutes, then add chicken stock. Stir to release any chicken from the bottom of the skillet, then add chicken skin-side up to the sauce. Add lemons cut-side up to the sauce between the chicken pieces.

Roast dish uncovered for about 30 minutes until sauce has reduced slightly and lemons have browned. Remove from oven and squeeze a bit of the lemon juice in to the sauce. Taste the sauce and add a few pinches of salt to your preference, then swirl in the remaining butter. Sprinkle with any fresh chopped herbs you’d like.

Serve over rice, mashed potatoes, or with crusty bread. Enjoy!

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