Saturday, December 15, 2012

Michael Symon's Braised Chicken Thighs with Spicy Kale

One of my favorite celebrity chefs is Michael Symon. I have been fortunate enough to visit two of his restaurants, B Spot and Lola. If you are ever in the Cleveland area I highly recommend both. There is also a new B Spot in the Pittsburgh airport you can check out.

I recently purchased his new cookbook called Carnivore and it is awesome. I picked a chicken thigh recipe to share because if you have been following my blog you know I love thigh meat.

I cut this recipe in half because as the name of the blog informs you, I would be dining alone. Preheat your oven to 375 degrees and lets get started.

You will need lemon, parsley, carrot, tomatoes, kale, chicken, wine, onion, garlic, bay leaves and bread crumbs. You know what else you need, jalapeno, because the name of the recipe includes SPICY. But guess who forgot the darn jalapeno? Yep, this lady. But cooking is all about improvisation, so I just dashed in some tabasco. Problem solved.

chicken salted the night before
The recipe says to salt the chicken the night before, and somehow I remembered to do that. I have done this a couple of times with meat based on Chef Symon's recommendation and I really like how it really brings out the flavor of the meat. It doesn't make it overly salty, don't worry.

I like to zest the lemon first because it smells so wonderful.

chopped veggies
Chop up your veggies.

chopped kale
Chop up your kale. You can use spinach or swiss chard in this as well.

Combine the parsley, bread crumbs, and lemon zest.

olive oil
Get some olive oil in a large pot and heat it up.

Put your thighs in skin side down and let them cook for about 4 minutes or until browned.

I am always paranoid about stuff sticking so I may have flipped mine too early. Cook on the other side for another 4 minutes.

chicken out
Get them out of there and let them hang out on a plate.

Drop in the onions and let those cook with some salt for about a minute.

carrots and garlic in
Add in the carrots and garlic. If you actually remembered the jalapeno it goes in now. Cook these for 2 minutes.

veggies swimming in wine
Add in the wine and scrape everything up from the bottom of the pan. Cook this until half of the wine is gone.

tomatoes and bay leaf in
Add in the tomatoes and bay leaf and once it starts bubbling you can put in your kale.

kale in
This looks like a ton of kale but don't worry this will reduce way down.

le creuset love
Put the lid on for about five minutes. I love my Le Creuset dutch oven!

ready to go in the oven
After the kale has reduced down put the chicken back in and put the lid back on. Put this in the oven for 20 minutes and walk away!

When it comes out of the oven sprinkle it with the breadcrumb mixture and you are ready to eat.

Michael Symon's Braised Chicken Thighs with Spicy Kale
This was so delicious, and so simple. Thighs are always on sale and I think they have a much better flavor than chicken breasts by a long shot.

Here is my bonus tip for leftovers...

leftovers will go into the crock pot tomorrow with broth for soup
Strip the meat off the leftover thighs and put it into a container with any leftover veggies and bread crumbs. The next day put all of this in a crockpot with some chicken broth and let it cook on low for 5-6 hours. You will have the most amazing soup with no work at all!

leftovers as soup!
So easy and so delicious.


  1. That looks so good and I love that you turned it into soup with the leftovers, great idea!

  2. I am going to have to give kale another try - its been years since I've tried it and I might like it now.

    Great idea for a crockpot soup!

  3. love the color of your le creuset! and michael symon is my celebrity chef crush :) great recipe!

  4. Yum, this is my kind of food. Lots of flavor but not heavy and rich. A nice change from holiday meals.

  5. I love his recipes too. This looks hearty, comforting, and delicious.

  6. Back when I still ate meat I cooked my way through one of his much fun! Never had a bad recipe of his!

  7. I think I would make a double batch of this yummy stuff just for the soup, great idea!

  8. LOVE! I have wanted to incorporate more kale in our meals but it just hasn't happened! I think this may be the recipe to start our kale lovin! I can't wait to read about other recipes you try!

  9. The chicken looks so good, and oh yes the leftover soup!! No waste and it's actually delicious, that's the best part. :)