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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Glazed Chicken with Dried Fruit and Parsnips

Where in the world did I get this recipe?  I was on the site looking up a web link and this recipe was on their main page: Glazed Chicken with Dried Fruit and Parsnips.  The picture looked good so I printed the recipe and decided to try it.  I had to purchase the eight chicken thighs, four medium parsnips, and six medium shallots.  At the store, I had to ask where the shallots were located, as we have never used them before.  They grow in clumps like garlic, but are sweeter and less pungent than onions.

This was easy to make, I peeled the parsnips and sliced them into one inch chunks then loosely diced the shallots.  I heated the oven to 425 degrees and put our Dutch oven on the stove to heat on medium.  The recipe calls for a very large skillet similar to a paella pan, but we don’t have one large enough so I used the Dutch oven.  Once the Dutch oven was warm, I put in about two tablespoons of olive oil and then added the parsnips and shallots.  I cooked this for about 5 minutes, stirring every thirty seconds until all the pieces browned.

While I was browning the vegetables, I mixed up the sauce that contains, apricot preserves, mustard, ground ginger, and cumin.  My wife tried the sauce and noted that it is quite spicy.  I added the eight chicken thighs to the sauce mixture and stirred to coat the chicken.  I also chopped one half cup each of dried prunes and dried apricots (our dried apricots had been in our refrigerator for about a year, but they were still fine).

Once the vegetables were finished, I poured ¼ cup of water over the vegetables and turned the heat up to bring the water to a boil.  While it was heating, I added the chopped dried fruit on top of the vegetables (do not stir) and then the chicken thighs.  I used my spatula, scraped the rest of the sauce from the bowl, and added it to the top of chicken thighs.  Once all the ingredients are in the pot, then cover and cook for six minutes.

After the six minutes are up, the cover comes off the pot and it goes into the oven for about 25 minutes.  It smells really good!

I checked the doneness of the largest thigh after 25 minutes and it was still raw near the bone, so I reached into our island drawer and pulled out the temperature probe that connects to the oven and inserted the probe into the thickest part of the thigh near the center bone.  It took another 20 minutes to cook, possibly because my pot is smaller than the recommended frying pan.  The really cool thing about this feature of the oven, is once the probe temperature matches desired temperature, the oven automatically shifts to a “keep warm” function.

Once the chicken was completely cooked, I removed the chicken from the pot, stirred a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar into the vegetables, and served.

I was very surprised the sauce tasted like a lot of the cooking that I encountered in India.  I read the bottle of cumin where it is noted that cumin is used in much of the Mediterranean and Indian cooking.  What I thought was curry in all these dishes was actually cumin.

We each had two chicken thighs (1 serving) and a spoonful of the vegetable mixture and had a great dinner.  It was also our lunch today.

We were surprised to read the nutritional information on the recipe and found that each serving has 757 calories, 36 grams of fat and 464 milligrams of sodium and 38 grams of protein.  This seems like a lot of calories and it would be nice to know if this included the chicken skin (we removed before eating).  It is also quite a bit of sodium; maybe they add more salt their recipes.

Highly recommend for a little taste of India in your menu.

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