Crispy Chicken with Fig and Shallot Compote
Yield: 4-6 servings
Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 40 minutes
8 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 3 pounds)
1 teaspoon flaky sea salt
2 teaspoons ghee or extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon (preferably organic)
3 shallots, halved and thinly sliced
1 pint figs, finely chopped
Preheat the oven to 450. Season the chicken with the sea salt on both sides. Heat a very large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, add the ghee or oil, swirl to coat the bottom of the pan, and add the chicken thighs, skin side down. Season the meaty side with pepper. Cook for about ten minutes, until the chicken skin is deep golden brown. Turn off the heat, turn the chicken pieces over, and season the skin side with pepper. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast for 20-25 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.
While the chicken is roasting, use a microplane or peeler to remove the lemon zest in thin strips. Then, juice the lemon until you have about two tablespoons of juice.
When the chicken is done roasting, carefully remove the skillet from the oven, transfer the thighs to a plate, and cover them loosely with foil. Pour off all but a tablespoon of fat from the skillet, trying not to lose too many browned bits. Set the pan over medium high heat and add the shallots and half the lemon zest, reserving the remainder for serving. Cook, scraping the bottom of the pan with a spatula, for about 5 minutes, until the shallots have softened. Reduce the heat to medium and add the figs. Cook, stirring frequently, until the figs are heated through, 2-3 minutes. Stir in 1 tablespoon of lemon juice. Taste the compote and add more salt, pepper, and lemon juice if desired.
Serve the chicken hot with the warm compote spooned on top. Garnish with lemon zest and/or lemon wedges.