Last updated on November 12th, 2018
Who needs the drive-thru when real fast food can be made right at home? Fast to cook and inexpensive to buy are skin-on, bone-in chicken pieces. Saute them in butter and herbs, and in less than 30 minutes you’ll have something crisp, juicy, and succulent to put on the dinner table. How I make this simple magic:
You can use all-thighs, all-drumsticks, or all-breasts for this recipe. Use a cut-up broiler-fryer chicken if you prefer a mix of dark and white meat. You’ll be happy to know that all pieces cook in the same amount of time, and that the breast meat, which normally turns dry and stringy when baked in the oven, will cook to juicy perfection when sauteed in a skillet.
What kind of skillet? Well, if you are cooking just 4 or 5 chicken pieces, a 12-inch-diameter, cast-iron pan will do very nicely. But for a whole, cut-up broiler fryer, or for up to 8 large thighs, a 16-inch electric skillet — I use this one — is ideal.
Enough small talk. Let’s saute our poulet!
*You can find Herbes de Provence at any decent supermarket. Look for it in the spice/dried herb aisle.
Put the chicken, skin-side down, in the skillet, allowing a little air space between each piece. If the chicken is too crowded in the pan, the pieces won’t brown properly, and the skins won’t crisp. If you wish, you can sprinkle a tiny amount of salt, pepper, and herbes de provence on the exposed flesh.
At this point, you can remove the chicken to a platter, and pour the pan juices over all. Garnish with fresh, minced parsley, and serve.
If you are French, you can add a splash of heavy cream to the sauce. Let the sauce boil and reduce until it is thick enough to coat a spoon — about 2 minutes. Then either pour the sauce over the chicken, or just return the pieces to the pan. When you plate each serving, be sure to spoon some sauce over the top of the chicken, along with a pinch of fresh, minced parsley.
Crispy outside, juicy and succulent inside, and perfumed with the invigorating scents of Herbes de Provence, these sauteed chicken pieces are THE BOMB. They’re also gluten-free and low-carb. For accompaniments, I’d go with buttered quinoa and a simple green salad. For wine, you can’t go wrong with a chilled Sancere from the Loire Valley of France.
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