Get crunken with this Drunken Cherry Chicken Recipe!
What to do? (Serves 4)
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Rinse and pat dry the chicken. Sprinkle liberally with Kosher salt and allow to rest, open to the air and at room temperature.
2. Brown chicken. In a medium (5-quart) Dutch oven, heat butter and olive oil over medium-high heat until butter foam subsides. Carefully add the chicken, breast-side down, and allow to fry in the oil, until skin is nicely browned, 3 – 5 minutes. Carefully turn the bird to brown all sides, about 3 – 4 minutes per side. Remove chicken to a clean plate and pour off all but 1 tbsp of the fat (reserve remaining fat for another recipe).
3. Sauté vegetables. Add onions and garlic to the pot and stirring, scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat and sauté vegetables until slightly softened, about 5 minutes. Add chipotle and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add balsamic, cherries + juice, water and whiskey, scraping the bottom of the pot once again. Raise heat and bring the liquid to a boil. Return chicken to the pot, add a healthy pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper.
4. Braise chicken. Cover pot and transfer to the preheated oven. Braise chicken until cooked through (internal temperature at the breast reads at least 170 degrees F), about 45 minutes. Remove lid from pot during the last 10 minutes of cooking for a crispier skin, or raise oven temperature to broil for the last 5 minutes of cooking and keep close watch on the chicken skin to prevent burning. Remove chicken from pot and allow to rest on a cutting board for at least 10 minutes prior to carving.
5.Reduce sauce & serve. Meanwhile, bring the sauce in the pot to a boil over high heat and boil, stirring occasionally, until volume is reduced by about 3/4 and sauce is syrupy, about 15 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings: add a bit of sugar or honey if it needs sweetening, some salt, pepper, chipotle or balsamic if it needs a bit of a kick. I added about 2 tbsp raw sugar. Ladle sauce over chicken and serve with rice, potato or other grain, or with a simple green salad.