Simply Satisfying – Vinegar Braised Chicken

with jasmine rice and asparagus
with jasmine rice and asparagus

This delightfully tangy rich recipe is inspired by chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten’s (of “Marketplace” at the Shangrila) recipe for vinegar chicken.  He suggests seasoning the chicken with salt a day in advance.  Serves six.

 3-4 lbs. bone-in chicken pieces, preferably dark meat (like thighs).

2 ½ tsp. kosher salt, divided

½ tsp. fresh ground pepper

1 ½ Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1/3 cup finely chopped shallots

1 ½ cups red wine vinegar (I substituted about half the vinegar amount for *red wine used for cooking purposes).

1 cup chicken broth

2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1 cup canned whole peeled plum tomatoes, drained and quartered

6 cloves of garlic

4 sprigs of thyme

3 bay leaves

2 Tbsp. finely chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 300.  Season chicken with 2 tsp. salt and pepper.  Heat oil in a 5-to-6 quart Dutch oven or wide, ovenproof pot over medium-high heat.  Brown the chicken by arranging half the chicken in pot in a single layer and cook, turning once, until golden brown, 12-15 minutes.  Transfer to a plate and repeat with remaining chicken

Add shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 2 minutes.  Add vinegar and cook until much of the acrid aroma has dissipated, 3 to 5 minutes.  Add broth and ½ cup water, bring to a vigorous simmer, and cook until slightly reduced, 3 to 5 minutes

Whisk in tomato paste and remaining ½ tsp. salt.  Add tomatoes, then arrange chicken in pot, skin side up, pouring over any accumulated juices from plate.  Tuck garlic, thyme, and bay leaves in liquid. Cover pot snugly with foil, then lid, and transfer to oven.  Cook 1 hour and 15 minutes, until chicken is very tender.

Let rest 30 minutes; discard thyme and bay leaves.  Scatter parsley and serve.

*I always keep a vacumized bottle of wine aside for cooking purposes. Usually it’s one I’m not so crazy about drinking so it comes in handy for recipes such as this one or in a hearty Bolognese sauce or Beef Bourgignon.  More recipes with wine to follow.  Of course I always drink a glass while cooking.