Chicken in Sherry Cream Sauce with Wild Mushrooms
Time requirement, about 45 minutes plus an hour to rehydrate the dried wild mushrooms. The rehydration can be done in advance.
What you will need:
2 chicken leg/thigh joints with the skin on.
½ teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper.
25 g (1 ounce) of dried wild mushrooms.
2 tablespoons of olive oil.
1 tablespoon butter.
2 shallots chopped finely (3½ - 4 ounces).
½ cup dry sherry. Use a good Andalusian sherry.
1 cup of rich homemade chicken stock.
1 tablespoon of flour
6 sage leaves
2 bay leaves
2 cloves garlic, peeled.
½ cup of heavy cream.
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Some good bread to absorb the sauce.
Pat dry the chicken with paper towels. With a good knife remove the knuckle at the end of the leg (discard it). Sprinkle the chicken with ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper and set aside.
Place the dried mushrooms in lukewarm water and let them rest for 1 hour to rehydrate. When ready, remove them, discard the water in which they soaked, and rinse them. Set aside. (For simplicity, you could leave the mushrooms in the water on your way out the door in the morning and remove them from the water when you return in the evening.)
In a sauté pan, that is a pan that is wide with tall (2-3 inches) sides, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil and one garlic clove over a low heat. When the garlic begins to sizzle, raise the heat to medium and add the chicken skin side down to the pan. (Remove the garlic from the pan and set aside.) Brown the chicken on all sides, over medium heat. This will take 8-10 minutes. When well browned on the skin side, remove the chicken to a plate.
Add the butter to the pan. When it begins to brown, add the shallots to the pan. Sauté the shallots for 3-5 minutes to given them some color, stirring all the time. Do not burn the shallots. Add the mushrooms. Stir and cook over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle the flour over the contents of the pan. Give it a few stirs to distribute it evenly. Add ½ of the sherry and all the chicken stock to the pan and stir well. Add the two cloves of garlic, sage, and bay leaves to the pan, stirring as you do. Return the chicken to the pan skin side up. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes.
Then pour the cream and the remaining sherry into the pan. Stir the contents to distribute the cream and sherry. Place the pan uncovered in the oven for 10 -15 minutes. Check the pan at 10 minutes
Between 10 and 15 minutes in the oven, the sauce should be thick the chicken skin crisp. Remove from the oven and serve on warm plates with some good bread to absorb the sauce.