Skillet Braised Chicken with Mushroom Sauce

Skillet braising is a great method that allows you to quickly cook chicken with oven-roasted goodness, but without the long wait. By starting the chicken off in a skillet (versus roasting whole) and finishing in the oven, you end up with moist meat and crispy skin – accomplished in half the time! The key is to use bone-in and skin-on chicken pieces. It may be easier to cook boneless/skinless pieces, but then you would take away the things that help make chicken taste so great! This recipe is perfect to use for any part(s) of chicken you have available, whether it is a whole bird, a bunch of thighs, or a mix. In this particular instance, I had leg quarters, and simply separated them into thighs and drumsticks before starting.

4 pounds bone-in chicken
1 onion, diced
1/2 pound mushrooms, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 teaspoons flour
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup chicken broth
olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 450F. Trim off any excess fat from chicken, pat dry with paper towel (if wet), and season both sides with salt and pepper. Heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat, then cook the chicken, skin side down, until skin has rendered out its fat and is brown and crisp, about 10 minutes. Flip the chicken and cook 5 minutes more, then transfer to a plate, set aside.
2. Pour out any excess fat from the skillet so that there is just enough to coat the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat to medium and cook the onions and mushrooms until tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic, flour, and thyme, cook for 1 minute, then stir in the chicken broth to form a sauce.
3. Return chicken to pan, keeping the crisp skin above the sauce. Move entire pan into oven, roast at 450F until chicken is done, about 12-15 minutes.
4. Wasn’t that easy? Now go eat!

* If using chicken breasts, cut them in half so they will cook evenly. Also, roast them for a few minutes less, since white meat cooks faster than dark meat.
* Do not use skillets with non-stick coating or plastic handles, those are NOT oven-safe!

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