Pear Chicken Chasseur with Gruyere Crostini

  • Yield: servings


1tablespoon olive oil
1tablespoon butter
8-- chicken thighs, skin on and bone in
-- salt & pepper
3-- carrots, peeled and cut in 3/4" dice
3-- parsnips, peeled and cut in 3/4" dice
1-- leek, white and light green parts and 2 inches of dark green, cleaned well, cut in half lengthwise and then into 3/4" slices
2cloves garlic, finely chopped
4-- fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped, plus 4 sprigs, cleaned and reserved
1 1/4slices peeled fresh ginger
1/2cup rich vegetable or chicken stock
2-- Bosc pears, firm but ripe, cut into 3/4" dice
1cup apple lambic (fruit flavored Belgian beer), hard pear apple cider, off dry white wine like a Washington state Gewurztraminer, or apple cider
-- Kosher salt
-- Freshly ground pepper
8-- thin slices Gruyere
8 3/4slices crusty French bread, lightly toasted


Preheat oven to 325.

Heat oil and butter on medium heat in large, oven-proof saute pan until rippling. Add chicken thighs, skin side down. Cook for 5-6 minutes per side, until nicely browned. Remove to plate.

Leave just enough fat in the pan to generously cover the bottom (pouring off any excess). Add carrots, parsnips, leek, and garlic, stir together, then add sage and ginger. Stir to combine. Add stock, bring to simmer, then put chicken pieces on top. Place in oven with well-fitting lid for 30 minutes, or until juices in chicken run completely clear when pierced, and carrots and parsnips are tender.

Remove pan from oven, and turn oven temperature down to 170. Using slotted spoon, place chicken and vegetables side-by-side on rimmed baking sheet. Remove ginger and discard. Cover loosely with foil and return to oven. Put pan with cooking liquid over medium heat, and add cider or wine. Bring to a simmer. Add pears, and cook about 10 minutes until slightly darkened and tender, stirring occasionally. Remove pears, and place with vegetables in oven. Simmer liquid on stovetop until syrupy. Taste for salt and pepper and add to taste. Place chicken pieces in liquid and turn to coat. Cover pan and place in oven.

Place Gruyere on toasted bread and broil in toaster oven just until brown and bubbling. Place a generous scoop of vegetables, 2 thighs, and 2 crostini on each plate, and garnish with sprig of sage. Serve immediately.