Roasted Chicken Breasts with Roasted Acorn Squash, Braised Pears and a Pear Cider Reduction

  • Yield 4 servings

chicken-breasts
Anders Krusberg/Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia

Ingredients

2 cups pear cider or pressed pear juice (if unavailable, apple cider may be substituted)
2 cups chicken stock or canned low-sodium chicken broth
1 stick cinnamon
4 whole cloves
4 whole peppercorns
2/3 cup sliced shallots
4 8-oz chicken breasts, skin on, bone-in and frenched*
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil

Instructions

  1. In a 2-quart sauce pot combine the pear cider, chicken stock, cinnamon stick, cloves, peppercorns and shallots.  Bring to a boil over medium-high heat and then reduce the heat so that the liquid just simmers. Continue to cook until you have reduced the mixture to 1 cup, 35 to 40 minutes.  Have a liquid measure nearby so that you can check the volume as necessary.  Set sauce aside to cool a few minutes, then strain through a fine mesh sieve.  Reserve the sauce.  Discard the solids.
  2. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
  3. Season the chicken breasts on both sides with the salt and pepper.  Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat.  Add the breasts, skin-side down, and cook for 3 minutes.  Reduce the heat to medium-low, turn the chicken over and cook for 4 minutes longer. Transfer the chicken breasts to the oven and cook for another 10 to 12 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F on an instant read thermometer. Remove the chicken from the oven and transfer to a serving platter.
  4. Drain any remaining fat in the hot pan, then return the pan to the stove  over medium-high heat.  Add the sauce to the pan and reduce it by half, about 4 minutes, or until syrupy.  Remove from the heat.
  5. Either serve the breast whole or slice the breast diagonally into ¼-inch slices.  Serve with the sauce spooned over the top.

RECIPE FOR ROASTED ACORN SQUASH AND BRAISED PEARS

Recipe courtesy Emeril Lagasse, copyright MSLO, Inc., all rights reserved

*“Frenched” refers to a technique where the meat is cut away from the end of a rib or bone, in this case the wing bone, leaving a portion of the bone exposed. If you are uncomfortable doing this yourself, ask your butcher to do so for you.

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