by Eric Leyden, Chef, The Nebraska Club, Lincoln, Nebraska
- 8 Smart Chicken thighs or legs, or a combination of both
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 medium yellow onion, julienned
- 1 red or green bell pepper, seeded and julienned
- 1 to 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 (28-ounce) can tomatoes, pureed
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 1 cup chicken broth or stock
- 6 sprigs fresh oregano, de-stemmed and roughly chopped (reserve a pinch for garnishing)
- 1 bunch fresh parsley, de-stemmed and roughly chopped (reserve a pinch for garnishing)
- 12 to 16 olives, preferably Italian
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Heat a twelve-inch or larger skillet over medium-high heat.
Season both sides of chicken with salt and pepper. Add oil to skillet, place chicken skin side down with a little space between each piece, and lift the chicken frequently in the first minute to avoid sticking. Adjust heat so that the chicken is still searing, but is not too hot to burn. Cook the chicken 8 to 12 minutes, gently moving every minute or two and checking to ensure that the skin is getting crisp. (You cannot crisp the skin too much in this case.) Turn chicken over when skin is golden brown and really crispy. Cook for an additional 4 to 5 minutes. Remove chicken from the skillet and turn the heat down to medium. At this point, it may be necessary to remove some of the fat from the pan using a spoon; the pan should be just lightly coated.
Add onion and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, until the edges brown a little, about 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and let cook 1 minute, stirring frequently so as not to burn. Add wine and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Add tomatoes, fresh chopped herbs, olives, and sugar. Bring to a simmer and adjust sauce with salt and pepper as desired. Continue to stir frequently.
Add chicken thighs back to the skillet, skin side up. Simmer in sauce for 10 to 15 minutes, or until sauce is desired thickness. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving.
To serve, place two pieces of chicken on each plate and spoon sauce over chicken, dividing sauce and olives evenly. Garnish with a touch of fine olive oil and remaining chopped herbs.
Pairing: Chianti or a light red wine