This dish happened sort of by accident but mostly on purpose. I was trying to figure out what to do with the rest of the leeks I had bought on sale. It kills me when produce or food goes to waste, so I had to use them. The result was Herbes de Provence Chicken with Caramelized Leek Gravy.
Savory, slightly floral chicken with earthy mushrooms and aromatic leeks all dancing together on a plate. It was the best of all worlds and what I didn’t even know I wanted in dinner.
I had the herbes de Provence spices from about a year ago and hadn’t used it more than once, so I was itching to use it again. Something about saying herbes de Provence makes me feel fancy. I’m suddenly sophisticated and chic and have a handle on everything in my life, especially cooking chicken. Most of the ingredients for this dish I already had in my fridge or in the pantry. I love it when meals work out that way. To me, it makes the meal taste even better. I don’t have to waste time stopping at the store before I get cooking, I can just cook.
If you’re in a quandary about what to make for dinner tonight, make this. I paired it with crispy roasted green beans, which was a delightful addition to the plate. You could also make mashed potatoes, rice, or asparagus to go with this. Or you could even have a salad to go along with it. Choose your favorite or what you know you should be eating but don’t. No judgment.
Close up of herbes de provence chicken, caramelized leek gravy and roasted green beans — by Aly Mazzanti
2# chicken cut into pieces
2 heaping TBSP Herbes de Provence
1 large leek or 2 medium leeks, sliced into half moons
1/4 C white wine or lemon juice for deglazing (can substitute broth, water, etc.)
1 14 oz can full-fat coconut milk
Chop the chicken into pieces and place in a bowl. Then rub it with olive oil, salt and pepper, herbes de Provence, and minced garlic. Next, place the chicken and lemon slices into a container to marinate (a large ziplock is good for this, or a glass dish that you cover tightly with plastic wrap works too). Allow to marinate in the fridge a minimum of 30 mins up to 2 hours.
When the chicken is done marinating, pull it out from the fridge and get your skillet ready. In a large oven safe skillet over medium-high heat add a tablespoon of olive oil, and allow to heat. When heated, place the chicken, presentation side down into the skillet. Cook for approximately 4 minutes per side, until the chicken, develops a golden brown crust all around. Then take it out and set it aside.
Next, add the sliced leeks. Let cook until translucent and beginning to get some color and caramelize approximately 8 minutes. Stir occasionally to bring up any leftover browned chicken bits into the mix and make sure that the leeks do not burn as they continue to pick up color. Add white wine to deglaze the pan. Add sliced mushrooms and allow to cook for several minutes until the mushrooms have broken down.
In another pan add coconut milk, salt, and pepper. Allow simmering for approximately 5 minutes, reserve about a 1/4 cup to make a slurry. Once the coconut milk mixture has warmed through, take 3 TBSP of tapioca flour and add it to the 1/4 cup of reserved coconut milk mixture, and stir to make a slurry. Add the slurry to the coconut milk mixture and stir until the mixture begins to thicken. Once thickened, add to the caramelized leeks and mushrooms and stir to combine.
Place chicken on a sheet tray and finish in a 400-degree oven for 10-15 minutes, until the chicken is fully cooked. When the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear, pull it from the oven, plate it up and enjoy!