So have you tried braising? It’s my new favorite way to cook because it’s relatively easy: brown protein, soften veggies, add liquid, cook for 45-60 minutes…ALL IN ONE POT! The flavors are always really nice having all those elements simmer together and condense over the cooking time.
The Garlic-Almond Sauce used below reminded me of how I make Aji de Gallina (starting with a bread base), although the flavors are different. The potatoes were great with this, but in the future I would cut the amount in half and add in a second vegetable–perhaps parsnips or carrots–just to spice it up a bit.
Braised Chicken in Garlic-Almond Sauce
- 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
- 1/2 cup slivered almonds
- 2 cups 1/2-inch cubes crustless white bread
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 2/3 cup white wine
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more for seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon saffron threads
- Kosher salt
- 4 parts chicken (split breasts, or legs with thigh/drumstick), with skin and bones attached
- 1 onion, minced
- Heat 3 Tbsp. olive oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat. Add almonds and stir until golden brown, about 3 minutes; transfer to paper towels. Place 1/3 cup almonds in a blender or food processor. Set aside remaining almonds for garnish.
- Add bread cubes and garlic to same pot. Cook, stirring frequently, until bread is golden brown and crisp, 4–5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to blender. Add broth, Sherry, 1/2 tsp. pepper, saffron, if using, and a large pinch of salt; process until almost smooth. Set aside.
- Heat remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil in same pot over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Add to pot and cook, turning down heat if needed to prevent burning, until chicken is golden brown on all sides, about 12 minutes Total (this step is just to brown the skin). Transfer chicken to a plate.
- Add onion to pot; cook, stirring often, until onion is caramelized around edges, about 6 minutes. Add sauce and chicken to pot, pushing down chicken to submerge. Bring sauce to a simmer, cover, and reduce heat to low. Simmer until chicken is just cooked through, about 20 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Divide chicken and sauce among bowls. Garnish each serving with reserved almonds.