Your slow cooker will cook the chicken in its luscious sauce, giving you a great weeknight meal for friends and family. Though traditionally served with risotto Milanese, you can also serve this dish with mashed potatoes, rice, or polenta. Be sure to set out a nice crusty bread for dipping.
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 large sweet yellow onion, such as Vidalia, finely chopped
- 3 ribs celery, including the leaves, finely chopped
- 3 medium carrots, finely chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- 6 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped
- 1½ cups chicken broth
- 1 (14½- to 15-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, with juice
- ½ cup all-purpose flour
- 1½ teaspoons salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 whole Smart Chickens, cut into serving pieces (or 4 pounds of your favorite chicken cut; thighs and drumsticks work well in this dish)
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ cup dry white wine, such as Pinot Grigio or Sauvignon Blanc, or dry vermouth
- Grated zest of 2 oranges
- Grated zest of 1 lemon
- 1 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat, and sauté the onion, celery, carrots, 2 of the garlic cloves, and sage for 3 minutes, or until the onion begins to soften. Transfer the contents of the skillet to the insert of a 5- to 7-quart slow cooker. Stir in the broth and tomatoes, turn the slow cooker to high and cover the slow cooker while you sauté the chicken.
In a shallow dish, mix the flour, salt, and pepper. Dredge the chicken in the flour mixture, dusting off any excess.
In the same skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat, and brown the chicken in batches, turning frequently until the chicken is browned on all sides. When the meat is browned, add it to the sauce in the slow cooker. Pour the white wine into the skillet and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom, of the pan, and bring to a boil. Transfer to the slow cooker, and stir the sauce.
Cover and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours or on low for 6 to 8 hours, until the chicken is tender (it will literally fall off the bone). While the chicken is cooking, in a small bowl, combine the remaining 3 garlic cloves, the orange and lemon zest, and parsley, cover with plastic wrap and set aside until the chicken is ready to serve.
Before serving, skim any excess fat from the surface of the sauce and stir in the garlic and parsley mixture. Serve the chicken from the slow cooker over risotto, potatoes, rice, or polenta.
Note: Any leftovers can be refrigerated for 2 days, or frozen for up to 1 month.