The secret to this crisp but succulent chicken? High heat. After sauteing the chicken briefly in a large skillet, the chicken -- skillet and all -- is placed a 500-degree oven. Finish the dish with a pan sauce made from the drippings. A little red wine and red wine vinegar bring depth and a nice sharpness to the sauce. It's dinner in under an hour.
Sauteed chicken with red wine vinegar sauce
Total time: 50 minutes
Note: Adapted from chef Bernard Dervieux of Cuistot in Palm Desert. The chef recommends Cabernet vinegar for the red wine vinegar in the recipe.
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts or whole legs
2 tablespoons butter, divided
4 whole garlic cloves, skin-on
2 tablespoons chopped shallots
3 tablespoons red wine
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 cup chicken broth
2 plum tomatoes, peeled, seeded and diced
Chopped chives or parsley for garnish
1. Heat the oven to 500 degrees. Sprinkle each piece of chicken lightly on each side with one-eighth teaspoon salt and a grind or two of pepper.
2. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large ovenproof skillet. Add the chicken, skin-side down, along with the garlic cloves. Saute over medium-high heat, until the skin is golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes. Turn the chicken and repeat on the other side.
3. Place the pan, with the chicken skin-side up, in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes until cooked through. The meat will be firm and the juices will run clear, and a thermometer inserted will read 165 degrees.
4. Remove the chicken from the skillet, cover and set aside in a warm place. Discard all but 1 tablespoon of the drippings from the pan, and return to the stove over medium heat. Add the shallots, cooking until they caramelize, about 2 minutes. Add the red wine and vinegar and cook until the liquid is reduced by half, a few minutes. Add the chicken broth and tomatoes and stir to combine; adjust seasoning. Whisk in the remaining tablespoon of butter, swirling to thicken the sauce.
5. Return the chicken to the sauce and heat 1 to 2 minutes until warmed through. Sprinkle with chives or parsley and serve immediately.
Each serving: 265 calories; 30 grams protein; 2 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram fiber; 13 grams fat; 6 grams saturated fat; 97 mg. cholesterol; 751 mg. sodium.