Braised food

Pomegranate Molasses Braised Chicken Recipe

Chef’s Notes

I’m crazy about pomegranate molasses. I first discovered this when I was working in a restaurant and one of my jobs was to run the spices (it was just because I lived near the store). It was such a treat – I was sent to Kalustyan, an amazing Indian spice market, to buy ingredients for the restaurant. I would go upstairs to where they serve food and have a falafel and hummus sandwich and then wander through the aisles of spices and rice and candy and cereal, taking it all in, marveling at the range of flavors the world has to offer. One of them was pomegranate molasses. Pomegranate is actually used a lot in Italian cooking, so I felt right at home with this delicious delicacy! It’s a brilliant red color, has a nice jammy consistency and is super sour, which gives dishes a real flavor. I love shelling it on the outside of a chicken for a tangy, tangy, sticky glaze.

Technical tip: Don’t overcrowd the pan or the legs will steam instead of brown – you may need to work in batches here, no worries!

Preparation

1.

Preheat the oven to 350F.

2.

Brush a large sauté pan with olive oil. Add 2 cloves of garlic and a pinch of crushed red pepper. Bring skillet to medium-high heat. When the garlic is golden and very fragrant, remove it and discard it.

3.

Season the chicken thighs with salt and place them skin side down in the pan. Don’t overcrowd the pan or the thighs will steam instead of brown – you may need to work in batches here, no worries. Brown the chicken thighs well on both sides, 10 to 12 minutes in total. Transfer thighs to a rimmed baking sheet and set aside.

4.

Discard the oil from the pan and add 1/2 cup pomegranate molasses with 1/4 cup chicken broth. Bring the mixture to a boil and let it evaporate by half, it should be slightly thick and syrupy.

5.

Return the chicken to the skillet, reduce the heat to medium and cook in the sauce for 1-2 minutes on each side, or until it clings to the chicken in a delicious embrace.

6.

Transfer the chicken to the baking sheet and roast for 10 to 12 minutes or until cooked through.

seven.

While the chicken is roasting, add the remaining molasses, broth and garlic to the pan along with the thyme bouquet and a pinch of the crushed red pepper. Taste and salt if needed. Bring to a boil and reduce to low heat. Cook until the liquid is thick and syrupy. Discard the garlic cloves and the bunch of thyme.

8.

Remove chicken from oven, transfer to serving platter, drizzle with sauce and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds and chives before serving.