4 split chicken breasts (skin-on and bone-in), any size breast is fine
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
½ lemon, cut into four pieces
3 large sprigs fresh thyme, left on the stem
1 cup shallots, sliced
1 tablespoons garlic, chopped
¼ cup vermouth or white wine
2 cups chicken stock
½ cup heavy cream
4 tablespoons cold butter
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
Bring the chicken to room temperature. Lay out on your cutting board and pat dry.
Place skin down and with a very sharp small tipped knife, slide the knife tip between the ribs and the meat and easily separate the two, see pictures below:
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
In a very large oven-proof skillet or sauté pan that has a cover, heat the pan over medium high with two tablespoons of the oil.
Once the oil is hot and shimmering, add the four sets of bones and sear on both sides for about 4-5 minutes per side until browned.
Remove the bones to a plate but do not discard.
Salt and pepper the skin side of the breasts.
Add one more tablespoon of oil and once the oil is hot, add the four breasts skin side down not touching each other and sear for five or more minutes until the skin is nice and brown and crispy and doesn’t stick to the pan bottom when lifted.
Flip skin side up and add lemon wedges, fresh thyme and the chicken bones along with any juice that collected in the plate. Cover and place in the oven for 10-20 minutes depending on how thick the breasts are. An instant-read thermometer poked into the thickest part should register 155 degrees F. Our breasts were large and took the entire 20 minutes in the oven. Do not overcook.
Remove the breasts to a platter and cover loosely with foil. Discard the lemon wedges. Pour the remaining pan contents into a bowl but do not discard.
Place the pan (being careful – your pan handle may still be hot) back on the burner with the last tablespoon of oil and turn the heat to medium.
Once hot, add the shallots and garlic and cook for about five minutes until the shallots start to brown slightly.
Add the vermouth and cook for about a minute to evaporate the liquid.
Add the chicken stock and the contents of the bowl including the bones and cook to reduce the mixture by half, about 5-10 minutes.
Add the cream and again cook to reduce, about five minutes. The mixture will be slightly thick.
Remove and discard chicken bones, they have done their job.
Off heat, stir in the cold butter, then pour the mixture through a strainer and discard all solids.
Stir the parsley into the sauce and serve on the side next to the chicken.
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