Tuesday, September 1, 2009

braised mediterranean chicken with polenta... 45 minutes

the goods:

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
4 to 6 chicken thighs
2 garlic cloves
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
1/2 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup chicken broth
3 small zucchini, quartered lengthwise and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
3/4 cup yellow cornmeal
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Working in batches, cook chicken until browned on all sides, 6 to 8 minutes per batch. Transfer to a plate. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat and return pot to heat.

Add garlic, tomatoes, and oregano; cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add wine and cook, scraping up browned bits, until almost evaporated, about 1 minute. Add broth; return chicken, skin side up, to pot.

Bring to a boil; reduce to a simmer, cover, and cook 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, combine 4 and 1/2 cups water, 1 and 1/2 teaspoons salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper and bring to a boil. Whisking constantly, slowly add cornmeal to boiling water. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook, whisking frequently, until polenta has thickened, 20 to 25 minutes; when finished, whisk in butter.

Add zucchini on top of chicken; season with salt and pepper. Cover; simmer until chicken is cooked through, 10 to 15 minutes more. Stir in lemon juice.

Serve chicken and vegetables over polenta.

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