Buttermilk Chicken With Pomegranate Crème Fraîche
by Lucia Watson, Chef , Lucia’s Restaurant, Minneapolis, Minn.
The secret to the best chicken is simple: high-quality, fresh chicken and a buttermilk brine. The buttermilk tenderizes the meat and creates a beautiful mahogany crust; it works for any cut of chicken and is especially great with thighs.
- For The Chicken:
- 2 boneless skinless Smart Chicken breasts
- 3 cups buttermilk
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
In a non-reactive bowl, submerge the chicken breasts in buttermilk. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Remove the chicken from the buttermilk and transfer to a heavy bottom skillet with a light coating of olive oil. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken about 25 minutes for a boneless breast (or about 30 minutes for a bone-in breast or thigh). Remove the chicken when it registers 165°F at the thickest portion of the cut.
- For The Pomegranate Crème Fraîche:
- 2 cups pomegranate juice
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 2 to 3 tablespoons crème fraîche
- 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
- Salt and pepper
- Zest of 1 orange
- ¼ cup fresh pomegranate seeds
In a heavy-bottom saucepan over medium heat, combine the chicken stock and pomegranate juice. Cook until reduced to about a quarter cup of liquid and thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Just before serving, stir in the crème fraîche. Swirl in the parsley.
Serve the pomegranate crème fraîche spooned over the chicken alongside quinoa and steamed broccoli (or other sides). Garnish with the pomegranate seeds and orange zest.