this was Nick's outstanding recipe from our January dinner.
Braised Chicken Thighs and Legs with Porcini Mushrooms and
Gorgonzola Sauce over Orecchiette Pasta Finished with Truffle Oil
2 oz dried porcini mushrooms, rehydrated in 3 cups hot water
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 each chicken thighs and legs, trimmed of excess skin and fat
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tsp kosher salt and 1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
4 cups onion, medium dice
2 cups celery, medium dice
2 cups carrots, medium dice
1/ 4 bunch fresh thyme, more for garnish
1/4 bunch fresh parsley, more for garnish
4 bay leaf
4 cloves garlic, mashed
12 whole black pepper corns
2 cups fruity medium body red wine, Carneros Pinot Noir , more to finish sauce
2 cups reserved porcini liquid, more to finish sauce
chicken stock, more to finish sauce
6 oz mountain gorgonzola cheese, broken into 1/2” pieces
juice of 1 fresh lemon
kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
1 lb orecchiette pasta, cooked al dente
truffle oil, optional
Rehydrate porcini mushrooms for 30 min, strain and reserve liquid. Rinse chicken and pat dry. Season chicken with flour, salt and pepper, remove excess flour. In a heavy skillet heat oil over moderately high heat until hot (not smoking); brown chicken pieces, transfer to plate as browned.
Reduce heat to moderate and add onion, celery and carrots, sauté until onions are translucent. Add thyme, parsley, bay leaf, garlic and pepper corns; heat until aromatics begin to release aromas.
Top with browned chicken pieces.
Add wine, porcini liquid and chicken stock to cover chicken 2/3. Bring liquid to a boil, reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook for 45minutes, or until tender. (May be cooked on stove top or in 350F oven). When chicken is tender remove pieces to a plate and cover.
Strain cooking liquid through a fine sieve. Reserve liquid discard vegetables and aromatics. Deglaze skillet with wine, return liquid to pan. Taste then balance mixture with additional porcini liquid and chicken stock. Return liquid to a simmer. Add gorgonzola pieces and mushrooms, incorporate by gently swirling sauce in pan. Then taste and adjust sauce with lemon juice, salt and pepper to taste.
Reserve some sauce for chicken pieces. Add orrchetti pasta to sauce and cook until pasta is heated through. Place pasta on a large serving platter, add chicken pieces and sauce. Garnish with thyme, parsley and truffle oil.