Braised Chicken Legs with Belgian Endive

This simple braised chicken leg with Belgian Endive recipe contrasts the bitterness of endive with the sweetness and acidity of balsamic vinegar and honey.

Portrait close up image of braised chicken legs served with Belgian Endive, shallots and capers on a black plate

Braised Chicken Legs with Endive.

I love cooking with chicken legs, they have so much flavour and are so cheap to buy. In this recipe, they are braised in butter and balsamic vinegar along with chicory and shallots.

Whether I am roasting them simply in this Chicken legs with Romesco sauce recipe or braising them like I am here they are great!

In many ways, the techniques in this recipe are similar to my Indian(ish) pepper chicken recipe. However, the flavours here are classically European!

The flavour of endive is amazing, I have a massive weakness for flavours that err towards bitter.

They allow you to play a little stronger with sweetness and sourness to create balance.

As a result, this chicken with endive recipe uses the classic combination of balsamic vinegar and honey to offset that wonderful earthy bitterness.

Portrait overhead image of braised chicken legs served with Belgian Endive, shallots and capers on a black plate

One Pot Cooking.

I am the first to admit that many of my dishes are far from simple. But this braised chicken number really is incredibly simple.

It is all cooked in one pot so next to no washing up! So a dish that makes my wife happy on flavour and on work.

The secret to cooking in a single pot is to ensure that your ingredients are all prepared in a way so they are ready to eat all at the same time.

Endive is a great ingredient for one pot cooking. It will happily sit there for an hour without becoming mush, but is ready to eat after around 30 minutes of cooking.

Portrait image of braised chicken legs served with Belgian Endive, shallots and capers on a black plate

Cooking with Endive.

Endive is often known as Belgian endive or Chicory. As I mentioned above it is most often associated with its bitter taste.

It is often used in salads, in fact, I use radicchio which is another of its names in this winter radicchio salad recipe.

When cooked that bitterness falls back a lot for those that are worried.

You will note that Belgian Endive is almost white in colour. This is because it is grown in almost complete darkness.

As well as serving in a salad and is really good grilled too, however my favourite way to cook it is braised. It is also a really classic way of cooking it!

Landscape overhead image of braised chicken legs served with Belgian Endive, shallots and capers on a black plate
Braised Chicken Legs with Endive

Braised Chicken Legs with Endive

Yield: 2 Servings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes
Total Time: 50 minutes

Braising may have fallen out of favour in our modern busy lives but these braised chicken legs with Belgian Endive shows that it need not take an eternity. Bitter Endive is perfectly off set with the sweetness of honey and shallot and the acidity of balsamic vinegar!

Ingredients

  • 2 Chicken Legs
  • 1 Belgian Endive
  • 3 Shallots
  • 2 Tbsp Cooking Oil
  • 50 g Butter
  • 50 ml Balsamic Vinegar
  • 1/2 Tsp Dried Thyme
  • 1 Tsp Honey
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
  • 1 Tbsp Capers

Instructions

  1. Cut the chicken legs into thighs and drummers I also like to remove the knuckle but you don't have to.
  2. Heat a large oven proof frying pan that you have a lid for over a medium high heat
  3. Rub your chicken with your cooking oil then season with salt and pepper then sear until golden on all sides, this should take 5-7 minutes.
  4. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  5. Cut the endive and shallots in half, then rub cut side of the chicory and shallots with more oil.
  6. Again sear, this time only on the cut side, this should take 3-4 minutes.
  7. When the endive and shallots are golden, leave cut side down and add in half of the butter.
  8. Once the butter has melted and begins to foam add in the balsamic vinegar and thyme and 'swoosh' around the pan.
  9. Add a small pinch of salt and a good grind of pepper.
  10. Finally nestle in the chicken pieces and drizzle over the honey before putting on the lid and transferring to the oven at 180°C or 350°F.
  11. Cook for 25-30 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 73°C or 164°F, then remove from the oven.
  12. Place the chicken and vegetables on a warm plate before returning the sauce to a medium high heat and whisk in the remaining butter.
Nutrition Information:
Yield: 2 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving:Calories: 865 Total Fat: 58g Saturated Fat: 20g Trans Fat: 1g Unsaturated Fat: 33g Cholesterol: 381mg Sodium: 677mg Carbohydrates: 20g Fiber: 3g Sugar: 12g Protein: 64g
Calorific details are provided by a third-party application and are to be used as indicative figures only.

26 thoughts on this Recipe:

  1. The endive and shallots are gorgeous here! I’m going to have to try this. I like the bit of bite that endive imparts. 😉

  2. Chicken, chicory, honey and butter. You can’t go wrong! Oh yes, butter makes everything better and everyone happy ( especially my husband ?) I’ve never cooked chicory I have to admit and now seeing this I must do it and do it fast. This looks soooooo delish ?. Definitely. Thanks for sharing this Brian!! ??

  3. Beautiful dish. I’ve come around to chickory in the last several years and have developed a taste for its bitterness. I love that your process to make this is so simple, yet the flavors sound so interesting and complex. May have to give this one a try 🙂

    • It would seem that we are slowly having bitter flavours weaned from our diet and I think that is sad as I love them, braising chicory does however really scale back the harshness of the bitter flavours but keeps them there, which is really interesting alongside the balsamic. Hope you enjoy 🙂

  4. I’ve never used chicory, and I have no idea what it is. Off to google it.
    But I agree – butter does make everything better, and I love how crisp and flavourful this chicken looks!

    • It is one of those unloved ingredients, I am sure it would only take a couple of celebrity chefs to change that… WHich would be a shame as it would at least double in price, let’s keep it our secret 😉

  5. I love a little bit of bitter mixed with other sensory flavours. I am loving the colour that you have achieved on hour chicory, quite tasty looking.

  6. I have never tried pairing chicken with chickory. Such a wonderful idea! Bookmarking the recipe for later use 🙂

  7. Yep, butter makes life itself better Brian lol! Yet another beautifully plated meal from you. I really don’t like honey so I may switch that out or leave it out but I love the idea of this dish (especially being a one pot meal). I haven’t cooked chicory before, just had it raw. I bet it’s much less bitter for a bit of cooking.

    • Cheers Jo… I can’t believe there are people out there that don’t like honey, sacrilege I tell ya 😮 Cooking the chicory defiitely removes the smack in the face bitterness but it still stays there at the back of the dish which is great against the sweet acidity.

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