Chicken thighs with Bosc pearsChicken thighs with Bosc pears

This is a tasty meal I made up the other night. Continuing my fun with inexpensive meats, I used chicken thighs in this dish. I don’t understand our national obsession with the boneless skinless (insipid, unforgiving) breasts. Thighs are just as meaty, far more delicious, easier to cook, and much, much less expensive. As long as you get the skin nice and crispy, you can’t go wrong. Especially when there’s bacon involved.

To make this chicken, I started by crisping some lardons in olive oil. I browned onions in the same pan, and I seared the chicken thighs in another skillet. I wanted to use the same pan, but there were a few too many onions in there and I just didn’t have room to get them as crispy as I wanted them. Once they were browned, I piled them on top of the onions and bacon, added a bunch of thyme, and poured in about a cup of white wine.

I put sliced Bosc pears on top of the meat, closed my Dutch oven, and simmered the mixture for about an hour. I served it over leftover potato purée along with a sauce made of the reduced braising liquid bound with grainy mustard. Although the dish was more than edible, I found the pears didn’t have a lick of sweetness. Is this a symptom of Bosc pears? They were tender and appealing, but I imagined them being very sweet and a great contrast to the bacon and thyme. Nathan actually thought they were potatoes!

Tonight, in celebration of Democratic victory, we’re eating…leftover chicken and pears, because I spent the day in jury duty and am too tired to do anything else. Jury duty is so boring, but it is conveniently across the street from Bouley Bakery, where I enjoyed a fabulous gravlax sandwich with citrus cream cheese on pumpernickel bread for lunch.


You’re on jury duty? How conscientious of you. And I don’t understand why you feel the need to constantly tear down the boneless, skinless chicken breast. High in protein, low in fat. so GRRRRR. Oh, and I am a Trader Joe’s convert. Sorry. They has passion fruit sorbet. They could have ritual sacrifices of puppies in the produce department, and they would still get my business. Sorry!

I so agree in the thighs vs. bland skinless breasts chicken debates. Juicier, more flavorful, and cheaper. What’s not to love? This looks really yummy.
Also, I love to make little mini-turkey roasts, using turkey thighs. You can take out the little bone and replace it with a bit of a stuffing.I like a spinach and raisin and onion filling.
We are celebrating the election at my place too.I’m specially ecstatic to see the door hitting the backend of a certain senator on his way out!

Bosc pears are good for coooking because they retain their shape, but they are not at all sweet which is why they are ideal for a dessert such as poached pears with a Chambord sauce drizzle. The sweetness comes from the sauce—not the pear. Bartletts, which are sweet, break up into mush if you cook them— they do make a nice pearsauce ala applesauce!

The boneless meat thing we have going in our country is kind of strange. I had a friend in college who made the issue clear for me. She wouldn’t eat meat with bones because it reminded her that she was eating a dead animal. Talk about false consciousness. Eh.

Anyway, I’m half and half. Chicken thighs are great, but I tend to buy mine boneless and skinless. Probably because most of my meat ends up cubed and in sauce, so it’s easier when it comes boneless and skinless. I’m always aware that it’s an animal.

Leland, I’m with you on the proliferation of boneless, skinless, tasteless chicken. The skin is there for a reason! To be delicious!

This sounds and looks wonderful, but you mean you seared the chicken thighs in another pan, not breasts; stop trying to confuse us!

Carly – I agree with you about the passion fruit sorbet – it’s to “die for” as is their guacamole, their smoked peach salsa, their cat cookies for people……..stop me now! I could keep going and going and going……

Thanks, Mom—I fixed it. As for the rest of you, thanks for your comments and advice on pears! I don’t know about this Trader Joe’s lovefest, though. Let’s try to keep our eyes on the ball!

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