In this chicken version of traditional osso buco, chicken thighs are simmered in a heady tomato sauce, then sprinkled with zesty gremolata and served on a bed of Gruyère-laced polenta.
1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
6 chicken thighs (about 2 pounds), skinned
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
2 cups chopped onion
3/4 cup cubed carrot
3/4 cup coarsely chopped celery
2 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 cup dry white wine
5 cups chopped tomato (about 2 pounds)
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
2 cups 1% low-fat milk
1 (14 1/2-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth
1 cup uncooked instant polenta
3/4 cup (3 ounces) grated fresh Gruyère cheese
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
2 teaspoons grated lemon rind
1 garlic clove, minced
How to Make It
To prepare chicken, heat 2 teaspoons oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sprinkle chicken with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Add chicken to pan; cook 4 minutes on each side or until browned. Remove chicken from pan.
Heat 1 teaspoon oil in pan over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, celery, and 2 garlic cloves. Cover and cook 5 minutes or until tender, stirring occasionally. Stir in wine, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon salt, tomato, basil, and rosemary; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low, and cook 15 minutes.
Return chicken to pan. Cover and simmer 35 minutes or until chicken is done. Uncover and cook 5 minutes or until tomato mixture thickens.
To prepare polenta, combine milk and broth in a medium saucepan; bring to a boil. Remove from heat; gradually add instant polenta, stirring constantly with a whisk. Cover and cook over medium-low heat 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in cheese and 1/4 teaspoon salt.
To prepare gremolata, combine parsley, rind, and 1 garlic clove. Serve chicken mixture over polenta; sprinkle with gremolata.
Chicken thighs stand in well for veal shanks in osso buco; their higher fat content, compared to other chicken parts, lets them hold up to long cooking or braising.