Braised Chicken Thighs with Mushrooms & Bacon

Chicken thighs aren’t something I cook with often. Something about the way it just falls apart really skeeves me out. But I saw this recipe and knew it would be delicious. Mushrooms and bacon? Yes, please. Mushrooms and bacon with a marsala sauce? MAKE IT NOW.

Because the chicken is braised, it does become very soft very quickly and I’m afraid if you’re not watching it, it will begin to fall apart. The original recipe calls for bone-in thighs and I’m sure that would hold it together better but you guys know how I feel about chicken on the bone.

The sauce is so delicious! The marsala taste is obvious but it’s different from most marsala sauces since it has tomato in it. It’s very rich and you don’t need much to be satisfied. I didn’t eat a lot of chicken but the sauce on top of some caramelized onion risotto with the bacon and mushrooms was a great dinner. Make sure you use low-sodium broth and taste before you season because the bacon does add quite a bit of salt.

Braised Chicken Thighs with Mushrooms & Bacon

adapted from Elly Says Opa!

2 thick strips of bacon, chopped

1 pound boneless chicken thighs

1 small onion, thinly sliced

4 ounces mushrooms, sliced

1 sprig of thyme or small pinch of dried thyme

2 cloves garlic

1/2 Tbsp. tomato paste

1/4 cup marsala

1/2 cup chicken broth

salt and pepper

Heat a small dutch oven/casserole to medium-high.  Add the bacon and cook until your desired doneness and the fat has rendered.  Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and set aside.  Drain off the fat if there is more than 1/2 Tbsp. remaining.

Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper and add to the hot pot, searing on both sides.  Remove and set aside.

To the pot, add the onion, cooking until translucent.  Add the mushrooms, thyme & garlic and sauté an additional few minutes until the mushrooms have released most of their moisture.

Stir in the tomato paste and cook it off for about a minute.  Pour in the marsala and deglaze, scraping the browned bits up and allowing the wine to evaporate almost entirely.

Add the broth and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, add the chicken back in, and then simmer on low for about 30 minutes, until chicken is tender and cooked through. Stir in the bacon and season to taste. Serve over rice or mashed potatoes.

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