Chicken with Bacon, Mustard and Cognac

Chicken with Bacon, Mustard and Cognac

As most of you have probably noticed- I love making up new chicken recipes with really great sauces- especially ones that are easy to prepare but seem pretty fancy when you put them on the table. This is the perfect Autumn dish - and Autumn is here! So I highly recommend giving this one a try...

makes four servings

8-10 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
coarse salt
freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme
1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
6 tablespoons olive oil
3 ounces bacon, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups sliced leeks ( 1/4-inch pieces )( pale green and white parts only )
1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
1/4 cup cognac
1 cup chicken stock
1/3 cup creme fraiche ( or sour cream )
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

Place the chicken thighs in a glass storage container, and season with salt and pepper. Whisk together 4 tablespoons of the oil with the thyme and rosemary, drizzle over the chicken, and toss the chicken to coat with the marinade. Cover and place in the refrigerator for 1-2 hours. 

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the bacon, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is browned, but not too crispy, about 10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside in a large bowl. Raise the heat to medium- high, and add half the chicken thighs to the Dutch oven, cooking until golden brown, 7-8 minutes on each side. Transfer the chicken to the bowl with the bacon, and cook the remaining half of the chicken. Transfer the second batch of chicken to the bowl.

Add the butter and the leeks to the Dutch oven, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cook, stirring often, until tender, 5-7 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook for 2 minutes more. Add the cognac, raise the heat to medium- high, and simmer for 2 minutes, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pot. Add the chicken stock, and cook for 2-3 more minutes, continuing to scrape from the bottom of the pot. Reduce the heat to medium-low and whisk in the creme fraiche, mustard,and salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the reserved chicken and bacon and cook for five minutes more.