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Pan Roasted Chicken with Potatoes and Chestnut

Serves 2.

Time requirement about 50-60 minutes start to dinner.

This is a warm comforting autumn dish.

What you will need:

2 chicken thighs and legs, about 1½ pounds in total.

1 ounce of unsalted butter cut into 4-5 pieces.

3 tablespoons olive oil.

4 whole garlic cloves peeled.

3 slices of pancetta, each slice cut into 4-5 strips.

8 fresh sage leaves.

2 thyme sprigs.

½ pound small red or white potatoes, washed and cut in half.

¼ cup white wine

Fresh black pepper to grind.

A dozen peeled cooked chestnuts. (I use Geffen organic “recipe ready” roasted chestnuts. I order them on Amazon.)


Heat a sauté pan, that is a pan that is wide with tall (2-3 inches) sides, and one that you can cover. When the pan is hot, add the butter and olive oil. When the butter foam subsides, turn the heat to medium, add the garlic and pancetta and cook until the pancetta begins to crisp. Watch the heat: you do not want to burn the garlic cloves. If they begin to burn remove them.

Pat the chicken with paper towels and add to the pan skin side down. Cook the chicken on its skin for about 10 minutes or until it is well browned. Then turn the chicken over. Add the potatoes, sage, thyme, and white wine to the pan. Grind some black pepper over the whole, cover, and cook for 30 minutes over a low heat. Shake the pan from time to time while the chicken cooks. After 30 minutes, add the chestnuts to the pan and cook for a final 10 minutes. Serve on warm plates. Make sure you divided the pancetta and garlic between the servings. The garlic will be soft and mild; just perfect to spread on some good country bread.

Alternatives: Sometimes I add mushrooms, usually a mixture of 2-3 of cremini, shitake, and king oyster mushrooms. Also, for a completely alternative dish, I replace the potatoes with turnips. The only changes these additions make to preparation is that they add a little more moisture to the final sauce. As a result, after the 10 minutes that the dish cooks with chestnuts, I then remove the lid and cook the dish another 5-10 minutes uncovered to reduce the sauce.

Below is a photo of the dish with turnips and mushrooms.

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