With the arrival of the cool fall days and nights, what I really was craving was a slow cooked lemon chicken dish that is based on an old French recipe of the family. It is a type of confit as well, where it slowly bastes itself and makes for just about the most succulent and tender chicken imaginable. Vive L’automne!!
The Recipe! 5-6 chicken leg quarters, or 7-8 thighs (bone in with skin) Powdered oregano and thyme 6 tablespoons of lemon juice (plus 2 more for sprinkling over the chicken at the end) Zest of 3 lemons Sea salt and fresh cracked pepper 3 cups of chicken stock 1 lb of baby potatoes Several sprigs of fresh thyme and rosemary 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil 3 tablespoons of butter 2 sweet peppers (orange, red or yellow) 1/2 cup of dried onion flakes
La Methode: Rub powdered oregano and thyme with sprinkling of salt and pepper on skin side of chicken. Brown chicken in a large pan, skin side down, medium fire in the butter and oil. Brown in batches and transfer to a large (8.5 quart) dutch oven. Pour two cups of chicken stock over the chicken, add onion flakes, tablespoon of sea salt, and lots of fresh cracked pepper! When done browning chicken, de-glaze pan with lemon juice and one cup of chicken stock and reduce on a medium flame until reduced to about half the volume of liquid, stirring frequently. Meanwhile, pre-heat oven to oven to 220 degrees. Pour reduced sauce over chicken, add potatoes, sweet pepper, thyme and rosemary sprigs and lemons that were used for the recipe. Cover and place in oven for 7 hours. There will be much more liquid when you are done, as all of the fat has melted and the chicken has basted in it as a confit making it extremely tender. Remove (very tender) chicken, potatoes and peppers with a slotted spoon to a nice large platter and sprinkle with lemon juice, salt(optional) and fresh cracked pepper.