Pan-fried chicken thighs with Italian salsa by Carla Lalli Music
Chicken thighs are the best—juicy, flavorful, and crowned with a generous swath of skin that gets fantastically crisp. There’s just one problem: Grocers sell thighs either bone-in and skin-on , or boneless, skinless. The ideal situation, in my book, is boneless and skin-on, and until the rest of the world catches on, we have to do it ourselves. Quick cooking plus crisp skin—worth it.
12 ounces cherry tomatoes, halved, divided
4 garlic cloves, 1 finely grated, 3 thinly sliced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
Handful of basil leaves
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, patted dry
¼ cup all-purpose flour, for dusting
8 ounces thin green beans, trimmed and halved crosswise
1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
.Toss half of the cherry tomatoes with the grated garlic, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and basil. Season with salt and pepper. Let salsa sit so flavors can marry and tomatoes release some juices.
Working one at a time, place a chicken thigh on a cutting board, skin side down. Press your finger into the flesh until you can feel the thigh bone that runs from one end to the other. Using a sharp paring knife, make short swift cuts along the length of the bone on one side to separate the flesh. Rotate chicken 180° and repeat on other side of bone. Wiggle the tip of your knife underneath the bone, angle blade upward, and cut bone out completely. Place thigh on a large plate and repeat with remaining thighs.
Place flour on a dinner plate. Season chicken on both sides with salt and pepper, then dredge very lightly in flour, patting excess off until only a sheer coating remains. Heat a large skillet, preferably not cast-iron, over medium-high heat. Pour in remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil, then lay thighs into pan, skin side down.
Cook chicken, undisturbed, until skin is deeply golden brown and flesh is cooked about halfway through, 6 to 8 minutes. Turn chicken and cook on second side until chicken is cooked through, about 4 minutes more. Transfer chicken to a platter.
Return pan to medium-high heat and cook green beans, shaking pan occasionally, until charred in spots, 4 to 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add sliced garlic and reserved tomatoes to pan. Season again with salt and pepper and cook until tomatoes begin to soften and garlic is translucent, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat and stir in vinegar, scraping up any browned bits in pan.
Serve chicken thighs with beans and tomatoes, with tomato salsa spooned over.
Reprinted from Where Cooking Begins: Uncomplicated Recipes To Make You a Great Cook. Copyright © 2019 by Carla Lalli Music. Photographs copyright © 2019 Gentl and Hyers. Published by Clarkson Potter, an imprint of Penguin Random House, LLC.