With a 1/4 cup of chipotles in adobo this chicken recipe has a great smoky heat that is balanced by brown sugar and has just a hint of cinnamon to make it interesting. This will definitely snap you out of the mid-December doldrums. You can do this with the halved chickens as the recipe calls for or with your favorite chicken pieces as I did. Enjoy!
Recipe: Caramelized Chipotle Chicken
Gourmet; September 2009
Makes 6 servings
When lacquered with a rich, complex sauce and roasted, chicken becomes a delicious crowd-pleaser. There's enough chipotle here to make your lips hum, but not so much as to overshadow the balancing act created by the other ingredients—toasty garlic, onions, and ketchup, plus a kiss of brown sugar and cinnamon.
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
8 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced (about 1/2 cup)
2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 cups)
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
1/4 cup chopped canned chipotle chiles in adobo (from a 7-ounce can)
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
2 whole chickens (about 3 1/2 pounds each), each cut into 8 pieces
Heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Cook garlic, stirring constantly, until golden, then transfer with a slotted spoon to a plate. Reduce heat to medium and cook onions, stirring occasionally, until golden-brown, about 15 minutes.
Add garlic and remaining ingredients, except chicken, to skillet with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sauce is slightly thickened, about 25 minutes.
Preheat oven to 450°F with rack in middle.
Coat chicken with half of sauce, then roast, skin side up, in a 17-by 11-inch heavy 4-sided sheet pan 25 minutes. Remove from oven and brush with remaining sauce, then continue roasting until chicken is cooked through and well browned in spots, 20 to 25 minutes more.
Sauce can be made 1 day ahead and chilled.