Wit Braised Chicken

Wit Braised ChickenI first created this dish to find an excuse to use a Wit style brew with chicken.  The orange peel and coriander seed wheat ale from Belgium creates the perfect canvas to play with flavors that compliment chicken.  Orange citrus and chicken are a global flavor match, you see it in the Chinese cuisine, to several other interpretations.  I wanted to play up the flavors found in this style brew to create a comforting dish that would bring me back to Belgium.  Like so many dishes I have had in my travels to this country, the techniques from the French kitchen lay foundation, while the dish has a certain rustic Germany twist.

Wit Braised Chicken
Wit Braised Chicken
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
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Print Recipe
Served with poached white asparagus and on a bed of Celery Root Purée to create a Belgian escape!
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minute
Cook Time
25 minute
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minute
Cook Time
25 minute
Wit Braised Chicken
Wit Braised Chicken
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Print Recipe
Served with poached white asparagus and on a bed of Celery Root Purée to create a Belgian escape!
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minute
Cook Time
25 minute
Servings Prep Time
4 servings 15 minute
Cook Time
25 minute
Ingredients
Servings: servings
Units:
Instructions
  • Preheat oven to 350°F/177°C.
  • In a 12 quart dutch oven, over medium heat, add oil and pancetta and cook until the Italian style bacon is slightly crisp, rendered its fat, about 5 - 6 minutes. Remove the pancetta from the pot, setting aside in a bowl.
    Wit Braised Chicken
  • While the pancetta is cooking, cut up the chicken into six parts, season all sides with salt and pepper and sprinkle evenly with flour on all sides. Add 3 chicken pieces to the oil and pancetta fat, browning each side for about 5 - 6 minutes.
    Wit Braised Chicken
  • The chicken will not be fully cooked. Remove the chicken from the pan and repeat with remaining chicken pieces. Remove the last batch of chicken and add coriander and orange zest, sautéing for 30 seconds, as the coriander starts to pop, flavoring the remaining oil/fat. Add the leeks, shallots and thyme to the pot, cooking for 4 - 5 minutes, until the leeks have wilted slightly. Deglaze the pan with Wit beer.
    Wit Braised Chicken
  • Using a wooden spoon to remove any of the fond on the bottom of the pan. This will give extra depth to the finish sauce.
    Wit Braised Chicken
  • Add chicken stock and cream, bringing the mixture to a gentle simmer. Arrange the cooked chicken pieces into the simmering liquid in a single layer, while adding the pancetta.
    Wit Braised Chicken
  • Place the pot into the middle of the oven and cook for 25 minutes. The chicken is done when a probe style thermometer reads 165°F/74°C.
  • Remove the pot from the oven and place onto a burner; removing the chicken pieces carefully to a side dish and cover to keep warm, while the rest of the dish comes together. Add the prepped asparagus on top of the sauce, in the pan and reduce the sauce over medium high heat for 5 - 7 minutes, until the sauce has thickened, reducing by about half and the asparagus is tender, but still holds its shape.
  • add the the chicken back to the pot, tossing to coat in the sauce. On a large platter, that has been warmed in the oven, pile the Celery Root Purée or Mashed Purple Potatoes with Caramelized Onions, Garlic and Herbs in the center.
    Wit Braised Chicken
To Serve Individual Plates:
To Serve Family Style:
  • Arrange the chicken pieces around the purée, then place the white asparagus around the rim of the dish and ladle the sauce over the top, garnishing with chervil or Italian leaf parsley and dried orange slices.
    Wit Braised Chicken
Recipe Notes

Cooking Beer Suggestions:

For this beer style, using a Wit (a Belgian wheat beer spiced with coriander and bitter orange peel) I would recommend Allagash WhiteBlanche de Chambley from Unibroue or Ommegang Witte.  The soft wheat flavors combine with the citrusy coriander and orange zest to compliment the chicken, while making a wonderful sauce.

 

This recipe was served at the Eat Real Festival, in Oakland, CA 2016.

 

Beers To Pair:

You could serve the same beer as the sauce was made with to brighten the dish, but a Westmalle Tripel would compliment the flavors found in the dish, or try a Westmalle Dubbel, or even a Belgian Noel Spiced brew.

 

Sean Paxton

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