Creole Chicken

Creole Chicken 

Servings: 6

Prep Time: 20 min

Cook Time: 50 min

*Your Chef will lead you through all the techniques, so prepping ahead of class is optional 

Ingredients for the marinade:

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 2 scallions, roughly chopped
  • 1 Scotch bonnet or habanero chili, halved (deseeded, if desired)
  • 1 lemon, zest and juice
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

    Ingredients for the Creole Sauce:

    • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    • 1 small yellow onion, diced
    • 2 celery stalks, diced
    • 1 red bell pepper, diced
    • 1 yellow or orange bell pepper, diced
    • 3 garlic cloves, lightly smashed
    • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano (1/2 tablespoon dried)
    • 1/2 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme (1 teaspoon dried)
    • 1 ½ tablespoons chili powder
    • 1 – 4 ounce can diced green chilies
    • 1/2 cup dry white wine
    • 1 – 14 ounce can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
    • 1 ½ cups low sodium chicken broth or stock
    • juice from 1 lime

    Ingredients for the Maque Choux:

    • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
    • 2 cups fresh or frozen corn kernels (from approximately 4 ears)
    • 1 small yellow onion, finely diced
    • 1 red bell pepper, finely diced
    • 2 cups (7 ounces) fresh or frozen okra, sliced
    • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
    • 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
    • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
    • 1 cup half and half
    • 5 ounces baby arugula
    • lemon juice or sherry vinegar, to taste
    • freshly ground black pepper, to taste

    Procedure: 

    1. To make the marinade combine all of the ingredients except the chicken in the carafe of a blender and blend on high until smooth. Place the chicken in a medium bowl or zip top bag and cover with the marinade, stirring or shaking to ensure that all of the chicken is coated. Set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes or in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours (if you refrigerate it make sure to remove it from the fridge 30 minutes prior to cooking).
    2. Keep the blender handy (no need to wash it!).
    3. Make the Creole sauce: melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat before adding the onion; sauté for 5 to 6 minutes until the onions are translucent and just beginning to brown at the edges.
    4. Stir in the celery and bell peppers and sauté until they begin to soften, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds, until aromatic before adding the oregano, thyme and chili powder. Toast for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the mixture is very aromatic.
    5. Deglaze the pan with the white wine, using the spoon or spatula to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom before tipping in the diced chilies and tomatoes, along with the chicken broth.
    6. Bring the mixture to a boil and cook, stirring occasionally, until it reduces by half. Carefully transfer to the blender carafe and blend on high until smooth (take care not to seal the top on the blender completely; you want to allow the heat to escape so cover the lid with a towel and leave it slightly askew while blending). Return the sauce to the pan and cook over medium heat until the desired consistency is reached (we like it close to a BBQ sauce, but you can go looser or thicker than that). Stir in the lime juice before using.
    7. To cook the chicken: heat a large cast iron skillet, sauté pan or grill pan over medium heat. Remove the chicken and discard the marinade. Lay the chicken, skin side down, into the hot pan and cook for 7 minutes, until the skin is golden brown.
    8. Brush or spoon the Creole sauce onto the flesh of the chicken before flipping; brush the skin side with the Creole sauce as well. Cook for 10 minutes, brushing more sauce on and flipping as needed until the internal temperature taken with a probe thermometer reaches 160°F. Remove to a board or plate and tent with foil to allow it to rest, where carry over cooking will take the internal temperature to 165°F.
    9. To make the maque choux: place the same pan used to cook the chicken back over medium high heat and melt the butter in it. Once the butter is bubbly and singing add the corn and cook, stirring occasionally, until it just begins to brown, about 6 minutes (it will be a bit longer if you are using frozen corn).
    10. Add the onion and bell pepper and sauté for 5 to 7 minutes, until softened. Stir in the okra, thyme, garlic and cayenne and cook until aromatic and the okra is soft.
    11. Lower the heat to medium and pour in the half and half, stirring to combine. Allow it to simmer until the liquid has reduced by half and a fairly thick sauce has formed. Stir in the arugula until it has wilted down and is cohesive with everything else.
    12. Remove from the heat, taste and add lemon juice or sherry and freshly ground black pepper as needed.
    13. Serve alongside the Creole chicken with any additional Creole sauce on the side for dipping.

       

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