Test Kitchen Tuesdays: An Invitation

Today, is the start of a new project: Test Kitchen Tuesdays

I am working on a cookbook and presently in the stage of proofing recipes, as well as trying new recipes that may help round-out the book.  The focus of the cookbook will be to show various ways to prepare a single recipe—economize, healthier ingredient choices, gluten-free/allergy sensitive, embellish for entertaining, or incorporate into batch/once-a-month cooking.

This is my invitation to you—subscribers or passers-by—to join me in the process.

It might even be fun!  At least, that’s a foodie’s point of view.  It is also an opportunity to invigorate our recipe cycle—everyone needs a few more recipes, right? Of course, I may just end up doing it by myself because it’s not such a fun idea to anyone else, which is fine too.
However, I would so much like for YOU to join me.
Here’s how:

Each Tuesday I will post a recipe I have never tried (you are welcome to suggest recipes too), and plan to make some time that week to test the recipe.  If you decide to make it too, please post a comment describing your results, adjustment, and opinion. You can choose to focus on one of the above-mentioned themes or simply make the basic recipe just as it is.  Jump-in any time and do not feel pressured to get it done in a week, I just need a goal for my own sanity.☺

In the next week or so:

1.  Make the recipe (posted below)
2.  Leave a comment describing your experience, opinion, adjustments, or suggestions.  ♥ If you do focus on altering it to economize, choose healthier ingredients or techniques, make it gluten-free/allergy sensitive, embellish for entertaining, or incorporate into batch/once-a-month cooking, please mention that too.
3.  Subscribe to comments so you can see what others have done.
4.  If you are feeling especially proud of your creation, snap a picture and send it to me at savoringtoday@comcast.net so it can be included the post.

Pan-Seared Chicken Thighs w/ Beer and Mustard Sauce

Serving Size  : 4
8       bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs — (4 to 5 oz. each) trimmed
2       teaspoons  vegetable oil
2       medium  shallots — minced
1-2   teaspoon  all-purpose flour
1        cup  amber lager — such as Dos Equis Ambar
1/2   cup  low-salt chicken broth
1-2    tablespoon  pure maple syrup
1/2    teaspoon  chopped fresh thyme — more for garnish
1        tablespoon  whole-grain mustard
2        tablespoons  unsalted butter
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Position a rack in the lower third of the oven, set a large rimmed baking sheet on the rack, and heat the oven to 475°F. Season the chicken thighs all over with salt and pepper.

Heat the oil in a heavy-duty oven proof 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering hot. Swirl to coat the pan bottom. Arrange the chicken in the pan skin side down in a single layer (it will likely be a snug fit), cover with an oven proof splatter screen (if you have one), and cook until the skin is deep golden-brown, about 7 minutes. Turn the thighs, transfer the skillet, and splatter screen, if using, to the oven. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of a thigh registers 170°F, 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

Pour off all but 1 Tbs. fat from the skillet. Add the shallots and sauté over medium heat until softened, about 2 minutes. Stir in the flour until combined. Stir in the beer, chicken broth, maple syrup, and thyme. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits from the skillet with a wooden spoon. Simmer vigorously until reduced to about 1 cup, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and whisk in the mustard, then the butter. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper.

To serve, dip each chicken thigh in the sauce and turn to coat. Arrange 2 thighs on each of 4 plates, spoon additional sauce over them, and garnish with the thyme. Serve immediately.

NOTES: Maple syrup adds a hint of sweetness that rounds out the mustard’s bite in this quick pan sauce. Not in the mood for chicken?  Try it with pork chops instead.

Source: finecooking.com (URL): http://www.finecooking.com/recipes/pan-seared-chicken-thighs-beer-grainy-mustard-sauce.aspx

♦ Just a thought—I will probably skip the oven part and do everything on the stove-top, but we will see.

This invitation was also extended through:
SS&GF Slightly Indulgent Tuesday
Hearth & Soul Hop

The Nourishing Gourmet Pennywise Platter Thursdays
EKat’s Kitchen Friday Potluck

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23 responses to “Test Kitchen Tuesdays: An Invitation

  1. Mary Schoenecker

    I am in, but not just yet. Life is extra full right now so I will jump in after we return from Florida. I will be using your chicken curry salad this Sunday for a shower and we just finished enjoying the Very Veggie Lasagna you posted. It was fabulous!!! One son was around as I built the sauce and enjoyed being my tester every step of the way. I added chicken sausage because I knew my guys would appreciate it. My younger son, who is a little less thrilled with the increase in veggies around here, was not home and so was unaware of the volume of veggies. He had two large helpings. I split this recipe into two dishes and it fed two families of 4 for two nights. Very Veggie Lasagna is a keeper in our home.

    • Oh, I am so glad your family enjoyed the lasagna! Jump-in any time with Test Kitchen Tuesdays, it is supposed to be fun not pressure, but I do hope to hear from you when you are able to make one–the feedback is so valuable 😀 Have fun it Florida!

  2. This recipe was a nice change, I think chicken or pork work well with these flavors. My changes/suggestions are:
    1. Use boneless/skinless chicken thighs–they cook more quickly and are easier to eat with a sauce.
    2. Coconut oil instead of vegetable oil
    3. add 1-2 cloves garlic to the shallots
    4. the switch between the stove top and the oven was a little awkward and didn’t help develop the fond on the pan I was looking for, so I decided to “punt” and do all the cooking on top of the stove. As you can see in the photo, the chicken browned nicely. Note: I have also found that when I’ve had a pan in the oven and then returned to stove top with it, it is hard to remember NOT to touch the handles when continuing the cooking process–I’ve been burned more than once that way.
    5. add some fresh parsley at the end — not a big deal, I just like fresh parsley and it’s a great digestive aid 🙂

    Overall, I liked the balance of bitterness from the beer and mustard with the sweetness of the maple syrup.

  3. Hi Judy, This is a really neat idea! I will do my best to try this recipe some time in the next week. I wonder if it would work well with chicken parts because I have a whole chicken to prep and roast already. I guess part of the project is to see if you can make do right? Thanks for sharing this on the hearth and soul hop! All the best, Alex

    • Thanks for stopping by Alex, I hope you can join in, but no pressure to get it done in a week–that’s just my goal 😀
      I think a whole, cut-up chicken would work, as they used whole pieces in the original recipe, but have to adjust cooking time for the breast portions. Let me know what you think if you have the chance to do it.

  4. I made this recipe and it was delicious! The changes I made were: 1. using boneless, skinless thighs 2. Extra virgin olive oil 3. Did all on the stove top 4. Used stone ground mustard. I think next time I will serve over either a brown/wild rice mix or quinoa with some extra sauce.

    • Thanks for the feedback, Julie! I wondered about using stone ground mustard, I may use that next time too. Ooh, and having a side dish to receive some of that sauce–that’s important too–I thought it might be good over asparagus. Glad you liked it, thanks again! 🙂

  5. What a great idea!! I love cooking with chicken thighs – my family is dark meat eaters. I hope to be able to play along and help you out – I like the changes already in the comments. Thanks for linking this up with us at the Hearth and Soul Hop!

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  7. I made this tonight for dinner – my family LOVED it, as a matter of fact I didn’t have enough – and I made 10 thighs for only 6 of us. My store didn’t have shallots so I used 1 leek (that I needed to use) and a 1/3 of an onion – plus I added 4 garlic cloves otherwise I followed it exactly! I will be making this again. I put up a blog post with the picture and linking to here for the recipe and invitation – I hope that is ok. I was just so excited how it turned out!
    http://bit.ly/eqx55W

    • I’m glad it was a hit in your house too. Thanks for adding the link in your post and here. 🙂 I like the idea of using leeks, to me shallots can be a little strong sometimes so this could be a great change–I also have leeks on hand more often than shallots. Thanks for joining-in!

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