12 August 2011

Braised Chicken Thighs and Oven Vegetable Risotto

Dom, my ever interesting and fun blogging friend from the UK, posted a chicken recipe over the weekend that made me sit up and take notice - an obscenely easy and delicious take on risotto with braised chicken to accompany. My goodness, I thought ... what a nice dinner for our guests on Sunday. Dom's recipe used legs and thighs - bone in, but I had skinless and boneless thighs, so I played a bit with his recipe, but not much!

I have this nice cazuela that I got a while ago from La Tienda - a mail-order place that sells all things Spanish. So, I used it to my advantage. I dredged the thighs in flour and seared them over high heat in some olive oil.

Then, removed them while still very pink in the middle, seared the carrots, onions, and mushrooms abit and then put the chicken back atop the vegetables and proceeded with Dom's original recipe.

Into the oven for a slow roast for abit, add some arborio rice and swirl it in the juices and oils and roast it a bit, add wine and stock and herbs (plenty of chopped parsley and tarragon) and slowly cook a risotto to a soft al dente smoothness. I was a ditzy cook and forgot to add the peas at the last moment, but that's okay! Must have been the wine I was drinking and the laughs with guests that 'distracted me! Ooops! Didn't matter, though, because we loved it.

It was soooo good! Soooo easy! Thanks soooo much, Dom! I'm totally sharing this with the rest of the blogging world today! The link above has Dom's original recipe ... what you see below is my boneless thigh take ... go either way, but DO go with it when you are craving good vegetable risotto and soft moist chicken.
Note: I halved most of the ingredients to make a smaller dinner than Dom made for his party.... just so you know.

Dom's Braised Chicken and Oven Roasted Vegetable Risotto
...Susan's adaptation...

Makes 4 servings:

8 boneless and skinless chicken thighs
flour for dredging
5 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 medium Vidalia onion, roughly chopped
1 small box baby Crimini mushrooms, wiped clean and quartered
1 handful Shitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced
3 tbsp. olive oil
a handful of frozen peas
1 wineglass of dry white wine
about 1 quart chicken or vegetable stock
250 g. Arborio rice
A generous handful of fresh chopped herbs – curly parsley and tarragon, and a small amount of lemon thyme

Making the Dish:

1. Place 3 tbsp. olive oil into a large cazuela or a large shallow oven proof pan and heat over medium-high heat.

2. Dredge the chicken thighs in flour, salt, and pepper and pan sear until crisp and golden on both sides.

3. Lift them to a platter and reserve.

4. Toss the carrots, onions, and mushrooms into the hot oils and juices and sauté until they begin to brown.

5. Place the chicken back into the pan, resting it atop the vegetables and place the pan into a preheated oven (375° F) for 15 minutes.

6. When the 15 minutes is up, sprinkle the rice into the cazuela between the chicken pieces and down into the roasted vegetables. Shake the pan a bit to settle the rice.

7. Drizzle the white wine, the chicken’s juices, and enough stock to cover the vegetables, but not the chicken.

8. Return to the oven and let the stock and wine simmer and begin to cook the rice.

9. Watch the dish and as the rice absorbs the liquids, add more stock. Be careful to drizzle the stock over the rice and vegetables, but not the chicken. You want that crispy crunch atop the pieces to remain intact.

10. Just before the last addition of stock, sprinkle the fresh herbs and the frozen peas over all and then drizzle the last of the stock. Continue to cook the rice, but be vigilant now.

11. Test the rice to have a risotto that is smooth and just a bit al dente in the center of the rice grains. Peas should be bright green and crisp too.

12. Serve right from the oven with a crisp Sauvignon Blanc.


  1. Who would of thought you could cook risotto in the oven without constant stirring. This is a must try.

  2. I saw Dom's post and now seeing yours has sealed the deal, I must make it. I love risotto, but hate standing over the stove.

  3. I saw Dom's post and yours looks as good as his. Will definitely give this recipe a try.

  4. Wow that looks good! That Dom must be a genius! Love you for posting this and doing your own thing. I often do oven baked risotto as it's so easy because you just sit back and let that clever old arborio rice soak up the juices. I'm so glad you made it and enjoyed it. xxx

  5. I love the idea of cooking risotto in the oven. Ina has an oven risotto recipe in her cookbook I just bought and I've been eyeing it and then you make this. This looks even better with the lovely chicken and veggies. And the wine.....

  6. Saw Dom's post and loved the look of it, now love the look of yours too...gonna have to make it now....

  7. Ahh that looks delicious! I'm definitely going to try this one out.

  8. I'm actually drooling! And no worries about the peas, I think the wine and laughs are more important anyway :)

  9. Hi Susan, I'll be trying this for sure, I may even use thighs . . . I'm not a fan of them! But I love the idea of oven baked risotto! Thank you to you and Dom for a great recipe!

    About the pickles, I just go to the farm stand and ask for pickling cucumbers. One thing I do is give them an ice bath for about 4 hrs. and I slice off a bit of each end before I put them in the jar.

    Hope that helps, if you have any more questions let me know, I'll be glad to answer them.


  10. I saw Dom's post too, and both your dishes look so good I definitely will have to try it one day! must.

  11. I just Love this kind of (one pot meal)recipe. As soon as I see risotto I'm in, but I really have a hard time with the stirring. This one is already printed out.Thank you Susan!

  12. How interesting Susan, it's sort of like an arborio version of paella, with all that lack of stirring... so it would probably taste really great using spanish paella rices as well, just a little drier. just been reading about paella in Patience Grey's Honey from a Weed (have you read it? you would LOVE it) so I'm a bit paella obsessed.

  13. @ Angela - Yes! Very like paella! In fact, I'm intrigued by the idea of using different rices ... here in the backwater, there is basmati, jasmine, arborio, and brown versions of Carolina long-grain and basmati ... that's it.

    As for Patience Grey -her lyricism is right up my alley. Thank you, Angela for the recommendation - basil essence in a peach jam ... heaven in January!


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