Braised Chicken with Basil and Tomato
Why This Recipe Works
For well-seasoned, juicy braised chicken pieces, we started by brining about 4 pounds of bone-in, skin-on drumsticks, thighs, and halved chicken breasts. We then browned the drumsticks, thighs, and larger breast pieces to create a flavorful fond, to which we added aromatics and just enough flour to emulsify the fat and make the sauce silky. Then we deglazed the pot with water and wine to create a braising liquid. Staggering the cooking of the dark and white meat ensured that the tough collagen in the dark meat broke down before the white meat dried out. Adding the broad pieces of the breasts first gave them a quick jump start before the thinner tapered pieces went into the pot. Finally, we transferred the pot to the oven and let the chicken pieces simmer gently until tender. We finished the sauce with a handful of fresh herbs and lemon juice or vinegar for brightness.