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A Chicken for Every Broken Heart

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There’s only so much consoling one can do over Gchat. I decided to escalate my efforts to help my friend get over a recent breakup by preparing her Dolores’ Brokenhearted Chicken, a recipe I’d bookmarked as soon as I read Alexander Lobrano’s touching story about love lost and kinship found in Saveur magazine. Immediately after we set a date for this mouthwatering dinner, though, my friend told me that her five-page-long email to her ex “worked,” and they got back together. San Francisco minutes – apparently shorter than New York ones.

I made the dish anyway and paired it with the Oloroso sherry I cooked with, in addition to a bottle of Morgon Beaujolais and a bottle of Frappato – we were celebrating! All worked well, especially with the perfect bite of Sherry-caramelized bacon, chicken meat and skin and a sliver of garlic. Tumblers were repeatedly filled, plates were cleaned and hearts were warmed.

Dolores' Brokenhearted Chicken

Dolores’ Brokenhearted Chicken

From Saveur, Dec. 2012, No. 152

SERVES 4

Ingredients:

½ cup flour
1 (3-lb.) whole chicken, cut into 8 pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 slices bacon, roughly chopped
3 tbsp. olive oil
5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup chicken stock
½ cup dry Sherry
2 tbsp. roughly chopped parsley
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into ¼-in. cubes
Country bread, for serving

Instructions:

1. Heat oven to 350°F. Place flour in a bowl; set aside. Season chicken with salt and pepper, and dredge in flour; set aside. Heat bacon in a 12-in. ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat, and cook, stirring, until its fat renders, about 4 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a bowl; set aside. Add oil to skillet, and working in 2 batches, add chicken, and cook, turning once, until browned on both sides, about 12 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.

2. Add garlic to the skillet, and cook, stirring, until golden brown, about 2 minutes. Add stock and Sherry, and return chicken to the skillet, skin-side up; sprinkle with reserved bacon along with parsley, and then dot with butter. Transfer skillet to oven, and cook, basting twice during cooking, until chicken is cooked through and tender, about 40 minutes; serve with country bread.