Rebecca's Cooking Journal

salt and pepper

Cider-Braised Chicken

It’s not really the season to braise right now: standing over a hot stove doesn’t seem very springy. But Tuesday it was chilly and rainy, and I had bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs in the refrigerator.

What does one do with bone-in thighs?

I don’t like bone-in thighs, simply because it’s harder to eat around a bone. But bone-in meat does work much better for long periods of simmering: my cider-braised chicken ended up quite moist and tender. The oniony-cider sauce was sweet and tangy. I was delighted it worked so well.

I based my dinner off of this recipe at The Kitchen Sink Recipes. I didn’t put the chicken in the oven: I just kept it on the stove until the chicken was cooked and then I reduced the sauce. I also didn’t add cider vineagar and I did add a little bit of brown sugar to make the sauce a little more sweet. I also forgot to add the parsley I had chopped: I found it in my little dish when I went to clear the dishes. Oops. It still tasted very good.

Cider-Braised Chicken

adapted from The Kitchen Sink Recipes

Yield: 4


1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
salt and pepper
1 large onions, halved crosswise and thinly sliced
¼ tsp dried sage, or 4 sage leaves
2 bay leaves
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
2 cups apple cider
chicken stock or low-sodium broth
1 tablespoon chopped flat-leaf parsley


Season the chicken with salt and pepper.

Heat oil in a large skillet. Add the chicken to the skillet, skin side down, and cook over moderately high heat until the skin is crisp and browned, about 8 minutes. Turn and cook for 3 minutes longer. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Chicken will not be fully cooked.

Add the onions to the skillet and cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened slightly, about 5 minutes.

Add the sage, bay leaves, and crushed red pepper to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden and starting to stick to the bottom of the skillet, about 5 minutes.

Add the apple cider to the skillet and return chicken to the skillet. Simmer over moderately high heat until the chicken is cooked, rotating the chicken occasionally, about 45 minutes. If skillet becomes too dry, add chicken stock to keep it moist.

When chicken is cooked, transfer to a platter.

Boil sauce until reduced, seasoning with salt and pepper. Add brown sugar to taste. Stir parsley in and then serve the sauce over the chicken.

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