Chicken in Garlic-Vinegar Sauce

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Braising chicken in vinegar and herbs is a very popular way of cooking in Mediterranean Europe. Often paired with sweet sausage, this is a gutsy, wholesome dish that can be made a day ahead. Serve with whole-wheat couscous tossed with fresh herbs and steamed broccolini.

Chicken in Garlic-Vinegar Sauce
Nutritionist Tested & Approved

Time: 110 minutes (60 minutes prep)

  • 3-3 1/2 pounds bone-in chicken pieces, (thighs, drumsticks and/or breasts), skin removed, trimmed (see Tip)

  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, plus a pinch, divided

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper

  • 7 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • 1/2 cup minced shallots

  • 16 large cloves garlic, peeled

  • 1/3 cup sherry vinegar, or red-wine vinegar

  • 1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth

  • 2 sprigs fresh thyme, or 2 teaspoons dried

  • 1/2 cup reduced-fat sour cream

  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

  • 2 teaspoons tomato paste

  • 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour

  • 2 medium tomatoes, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 2 tablespoons finely minced fresh chives

  1. Pat chicken pieces dry with paper towels and season with 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper.

  2. Heat 2 teaspoons oil and butter in a large heavy casserole or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add half the chicken pieces and cook, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove to a large plate. Add 2 teaspoons oil to the pot. Add the remaining chicken and cook, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Remove to the plate.

  3. Heat 2 more teaspoons oil. Add shallots and garlic and cook, stirring, until the shallots are soft and lightly browned, about 1 minute. Add vinegar and bring to a simmer. Return the chicken to the pot. Pour in broth and then carefully nestle the thyme sprigs among the chicken pieces (or stir in dry thyme).

  4. Cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and simmer over medium-low heat until the chicken is very tender, about 50 minutes.

  5. Just before the chicken is done, whisk sour cream, mustard, tomato paste and flour in a small bowl until smooth. Combine tomatoes, chives, the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and pinch of salt in another small bowl; reserve for garnish.

  6. When the chicken is done, remove to a plate, discarding the thyme sprigs (if using). Stir the sour cream mixture into the sauce; bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to low, return the chicken to the sauce and reheat, about 1 minute. Serve garnished with the tomato mixture.

Tip: If you are using a combination of thighs, drumsticks and breasts, cut each breast in half crosswise to make pieces about the size of a thigh. And if you buy whole legs, separate the drumsticks and thighs. When the pieces are about the same size, they’ll cook at about the same rate.

If preparing ahead of time: Prepare through Step 4; cool to room temperature and refrigerate for up to 1 day. Finish with Steps 5-6 before serving.

Nutritional Facts

Added Sugars
Dietary Fiber
Monounsaturated Fat
Saturated Fat
Vitamin C (20% daily value)
Zinc (17% dv)
Potassium & Vitamin A (16% dv)
Carbohydrate Servings
1 vegetable
4 lean meat
2 fat

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chicken main dish EatingWell Meal Plan ultra-low-carb chicken/poultry

1 reply

ohneclue 2014-01-09 22:52:47 -0600 Report

The idea of this recipe is great but neither the sherry or red wine vinegar was the tested vinegar. Beware of using any vinegar except the one used in testing that matched Metformin for reducing/controlling blood sugars — apple cider vinegar. No other vinegar has been tested and therefore, should not be used in place of the tested one — ACV. So you can't just have a recipe with any vinegar in it and expect the same results. It would be very easy to substitute the tested vinegar and add a little sugar substitute to offset the sharp vinegar taste. This recipe calls for 1 spoon sugar which is not too bad but I personally use only the sugar alternatives that don't kick or get processed as a regular sugar.

Sherry vinegar is nothing but balsamic with sherry flavoring added and has 500% more sugar calories in it which can be a problem. You can successfully change out the vinegar listed for the tested apple cider vinegar that was tested.