This simple, sweet and sour braise is a riff on a pork chop dish my mother prepared often when I was a child and today it has become a favorite in our house. Unlike the thin, dry, grocery store pork chops that Mom used, rich, flavorful chicken thighs are the perfect vehicle for these robust flavors.
As the chicken cooks, the collagen-rich thighs almost melt into the sauce, taming the acidity of the tomatoes and lemons and rendering the sauce silky and rich.
The dish makes a great weeknight meal, coming together quickly, and could even be a one pan dish if you throw a handful of pasta into the unreduced sauce.
Chicken with Lemon, Tomatoes, and HoneyCourse: Bone-In, Dinner, Oven Braised Dishes
An easy, sweet and sour braised chicken dish, bright with lemon and tomato.
4 medium bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
1 12-14½ oz can peeled, diced tomatoes
2 cups light chicken stock
1 large onion, peeled and sliced radially
1 lemon sliced into ⅛-inch slices
Juice of 1 lemon
¼ cup honey
2 cloves garlic
4-8 sprigs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat your oven to 300°.
- Heat an oven-proof pan over medium heat.
- Generously season the chicken pieces with salt and pepper, and place your chicken into the pan skin-side down.
- Cook until the skin side is well browned.
- Remove the chicken pieces from the pan and set aside. There should be a good amount of rendered fat in the pan.
- Add onions and whole garlic cloves to the rendered fat and sauté for 2-5 minutes or until the onions are translucent and just starting to brown.
- Add tomatoes, stock, strained lemon juice, and honey.
- Reduce the heat. Return the chicken to the pan skin-side up.
- Arrange one to two lemon slices atop of each of the chicken pieces.
- Tuck the remaining lemon slices in between the chicken pieces, along with the thyme and bay leaf.
- Transfer your pan to the oven and braise uncovered for 1½ hours or until the chicken is nearly falling off the bone and the sauce is reduced. Season to taste.
- Serve with steamed couscous, buttered egg noodles, or simply in a bowl accompanied by fresh, crusty bread.
Be sure to check out my other food project, The Weekly Menu!