Matching cherries with poultry is well known in many cuisines; whether it’s a classic roasted goose or duck served with cherry sauce, a Persian dish of chicken cooked with a dried cherries and walnuts sauce, or other dishes.
So, when I ended up with a jar of sour cherries preserved in unsweetened cherry juice, these dishes became the inspiration.
Here, rather than roast the chicken and prepare the sauce separately, I have decided to cook the chicken in a sour cherry and red wine sauce. The result was highly enjoyable: the chicken turned out moist and tender and the tasty sauce velvety and with a beautiful deep color.
If you love poultry dishes with fruits, this dish is for you. Give it a try and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it too!
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cooking time: 1 hour
1 small onion, cut into medium size cubes
½ stick (55 grams) butter
2 Tbs light olive oil
1 tsp salt + to taste
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp sugar
4 chicken thighs, at room temperature
2 garlic cloves, chopped
4 bay leaves
2 Tbs flour
1 cup cherry juice, unsweetened
1 cup chicken stock
½ cup red wine
1 cup pitted sour cherries
1 tsp Herbs de Provence mix
1. Place the onion, butter, oil, salt, black pepper and sugar in a wide pot. Mix and fry gently, on medium heat, for 2-3 minutes, until the onion is translucent.
2. Add the chicken thighs, skin side down, and sprinkle with the chopped garlic. Add the bay leaves and fry the chicken for 2-3 minutes on each side.
3. Transfer the chicken to a plate and sprinkle the flour on top of the onion mix. Mix gently with a whisk and gradually add the cherry juice, chicken stock and red wine, whisking constantly, to create a smooth sauce.
4. Taste the sauce and add salt to taste. Add the pitted cherries and the chicken. Sprinkle with the Herbs de Provence and bring to the verge of boiling. Lower the heat to medium-low and cover the pot. Cook for 50 minutes.
5. Turn off the heat and uncover the pot. Let the dish stand at room temperature for 10 minutes. Place a paper towel on top of the sauce to absorb the extra oil. Reheat and serve, with white rice as shown here, or with polenta.