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Orange-Braised Chicken with Crisp Prosciutto

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Serves four.

  • 1 navel orange, scrubbed and dried
  • 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs (about 1-1/2 lb.), rinsed and patted dry
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • All-purpose flour for dredging
  • 2 Tbs. olive oil
  • 2 thin slices domestic prosciutto (about 1 oz.), cut into strips 1/4 inch wide
  • 1/2 cup thinly sliced shallots (3 to 4 large)
  • 1 tsp. coriander seeds, crushed
  • 1/4 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
  • 3 Tbs. white-wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup homemade or low-salt canned chicken broth
  • 1 bay leaf

Cut the orange in half. Squeeze one half (to get about 1/4 cup juice) and discard the rind. Slice the other half into 1/4-inch half-moons.

Unroll the chicken thighs and remove any large pieces of fat. Roll the thighs back up and season with salt and pepper. Dredge each thigh in flour, shaking to get rid of the excess.

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering, add the prosciutto and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels. Working in two batches, brown the thighs, starting seam side down to help them hold their shape. After the bottom is nicely browned (about 3 minutes), flip and brown the other side; it’s all right if the thighs start to unfurl. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

Add the shallots to the pan, reduce the heat to medium, and stir in the coriander and chile flakes. Stir in the orange slices and cook until the shallots begin to soften and color, 3 to 4 minutes. Pour in the vinegar, scraping up any browned bits, and boil until the pan is practically dry. Add the broth and reserved orange juice and return to a boil. Return the thighs and any accumulated juices to the pan. Tuck the bay leaf into the pan, cover tightly with a lid or foil, and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Cook, turning the thighs once after 10 minutes, until they’re cooked through and tender, 25 to30 minutes total. Taste the sauce for salt and pepper; discard the bay leaf. Serve immediately, garnished with the crisped prosciutto.

Serving Suggestions

Serve with creamy polenta or rice.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 310; Fat (g): fat g 13; Fat Calories (kcal): 120; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 3; Protein (g): protein g 32; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 7; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 14; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 2; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 880; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 120; Fiber (g): fiber g 1;

Photo: Scott Phillips

Even my picky eaters enjoyed this chicken - it was very tender and flavorful, plus the whole house smelled wonderful as it braised. You may want to make more of the crisp proscuitto, as I couldn't keep my family from nibbling on them while everything cooked. :-)

I doubled this recipe and served it with "Artisan Bread in 5 minutes" and a mixed wild rice/brown rice. It was amazing and the crowd at the table nearly licked their plates! I highly recommend it and will do it again! The Prosciutto really adds more than a garnish.

Excellent- the browning is critical as the chicken is braised so you want the lovely brown colour (rather than beige) on the chicken. Very tender, flavourful. I served it with Olive Oil mashed potatoes and braised Swiss Chard on the side.

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