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Braised Chicken Thighs, Blackberries, and Fennel Purée

Braised Chicken Thighs, Blackberries, and Fennel Purée

Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Keyword Chicken Thighs with Fennel Purée
Servings 4
Author Jane, adapted from "Wildwood: Cooking from the Source in the Pacific Northwest," Cory Schreiber


  • 6 chicken thighs, with bone-in and skin-on
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup Pinot Noir
  • 6 + sprigs thyme extra for garnish
  • 2 white onions, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 2 cups fresh black berries
  • 1 medium fennel bulb, trimmed and chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • 1-1-1/2 cup low sodium chicken broth

Fennel Purée

  • 2 lbs. Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and quarters
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 2 medium fennel bulbs, roughly chopped reserve some green tops for garnish
  • 1/4 cup Chardonnay
  • 2 tablespoons low sodium chicken broth
  • 1 tablespoons fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • salt and pepper


For the Chicken

  • Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. In a heavy ovenproof 12-inch skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the chicken thighs to the skillet and brown the chicken on both sides, about 7 minutes per side. Transfer the chicken to a plate and drain the skillet of any excess fat.
  • Add the wine to the skillet and scrape any browned bits from the skillet; do not let the wine boil. Add the thyme, onions, carrots, bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, fennel seeds, 1 cup of blackberries, and the chopped fennel, stir to combine. Then add the chicken thighs back to the skillet along with just enough chicken broth to fill the skillet halfway, the chicken should not be submerged. Bring to a boil. Transfer the skillet to the oven and braise for 45 minutes, or until the chicken is tender.

For the Fennel Purée

  • While the chicken is braising, make the fennel purée. In a large stockpot, add the potatoes and cover with water. Add 1 teaspoon of salt. Bring to a boil and cook for 20 minutes or until the potatoes are tender.
  • While the potatoes cook, make the fennel. In a 2 qt. saucepan, combine the chopped fennel, Chardonnay, chicken broth, and fennel seeds. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer until the liquid has evaporated. Add the heavy cream and simmer over low heat for about 20 minutes or until the fennel is tender. Purée the fennel mixture in a food processor until smooth.
  • Drain the potatoes and mash with a potato masher until smooth. Stir in the fennel purée and season with 1 teaspoon of salt and pepper. Cover with foil to keep them warm and set aside.
  • Remove the chicken from the oven. Remove the bay leaves, cinnamon sticks, and thyme sprigs. Taste the sauce and adjust for seasoning.

Toe Serve

  • Place a chicken thigh in each shallow bowl and add a spoonful of fennel purée. Add a 1/4 cup of the remaining blackberries per bowl and spoon some sauce over the top. Garnish with thyme sprigs or green fennel tops.