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I wasn’t planning on posting this recipe. However, I thought it looked rather delicious and I went ahead and arranged the chicken in my favorite copper pot and took this photo. Then right back to the table with dinner.

Most days in the kitchen, it’s just walking in and cooking. No recipes to follow, no precise measurements, just good clean cooking. Recipes are great as guidelines, but the fun part of cooking is adjusting, tasting and enjoying what comes to mind. Its excitement, a balancing act and I don’t think trying has ever hurt an impromptu meal.

 

We all find a particular style of cooking, preferring one method over the others. Braising is my top choice for cooking at home. Anything that has to do with infusing subtle flavors interests me. Fresh herbs, dried herbs, bundles, sachets and stocks all have a pleasant impact when braising.

 

Just about anything can be braised and any combinations can be tried, but the end result is always the same…tender.

 

So there you have it! Life is busy, braise with desire.

 

 

Braised Chicken w/ Chilies & Tomato Recipe [Serves 4]

 

4 chicken legs

2 Tablespoons sunflower oil -or- olive oil

 

½ medium onion, diced

1 large poblano pepper, diced

2 whole cloves

1 teaspoon cumin seeds

3 large garlic cloves, peeled & minced

1 teaspoon smoked paprika

½ teaspoon crushed red chilies

 

¼ – ½ cup chicken stock

15-ounce can diced tomatoes

½ teaspoon sea salt

½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

 

2-4 Tablespoons crème fraîche [optional enrichment]

1 cup cilantro leaves

 

1. Heat oil in a braising pan or large pot on low.

2. Place chicken in pan and lightly brown chicken on all sides.* Remove from pan and set aside.

3. Sauté onions and poblanos with cloves until tender.

4. Add garlic and spices and continue to cook for a few moments.

5. Add stock, tomatoes, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer.

6. Return chicken to the pan and cover, simmer for 45 minutes or until tender.

7. Stir in crème fraîche and serve with cilantro.

 

*note: I prefer to gently sear chicken for braising as it keeps the chicken from falling apart towards the end. Then I remove the skin and discard. For a deeper flavor, brown the chicken well on all sides and continue with the recipe. Serve with potatoes or rice.

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