Some dishes are so special, we’re willing to wait all year just to eat them once. But they’re often complicated and time-consuming. (We’re looking at you, Thanksgiving turkey.) This skillet chicken with apricots and fresh herbs is just as special and worth the wait, but without all the effort.
“This is one of my favorite things to cook,” recipe developer Erin McDowell tells us, “but I can only do it when apricots are in season. It’s a thing you make once or twice a year, and then you wait all year to make it again.
“In some ways, it’s a typical skillet chicken dish,” she continues, “but you add whole shallots, a little bit of white wine and cream to makes this irresistible gravy. You can’t really mess it up, it’s always going to be crazy delicious and, on top of that, it’s super-duper beautiful.” Easy, delicious and gorgeous? Yep, we’re sold.
Don’t skimp on the fresh herbs: They’re the cherry on top of this summer masterpiece.
8 chicken thighs (about 3 pounds)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
8 shallots, peeled (stem end left attached)
8 garlic cloves, skin left on
¾ cup dry white wine
¼ cup heavy cream
12 apricots, halved and pitted
1 tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon
1 tablespoon chopped fresh basil
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Have ready a large, oven-safe skillet that will hold all 8 pieces of chicken.
2. Using paper towels, pat the chicken dry. Season generously with salt and pepper on both sides. Sprinkle the flour over the chicken and toss it around to coat well on all sides.
3. Heat the butter and olive oil in the skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken, skin side down, spaced evenly inside the pan. Reduce the heat to low and continue to cook until the chicken skin is very golden-brown and crisp, 8 to 10 minutes. Turn the chicken over so the skin side faces up.
4. Arrange the shallots and garlic evenly in the spaces between the chicken. Add the white wine and heavy cream and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Transfer the skillet to the oven and bake until the shallots are almost fully tender and the chicken is nearly cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes.
5. Add the apricots to the pan in the spaces between the chicken and shallots—it’s OK for the skillet to be quite full at this point. Return the skillet to the oven until the apricots and shallots are tender and the chicken is fully cooked, 10 to 15 minutes more. Just before serving, garnish with the tarragon and basil.