I was thinking of doing an instructable on this some time ago, but that Dorm Food Contest is what finally set me off to it.
I'm a student doing a semester in France, and I was eating a lot of chicken because it's pretty cheap compared to the other stuff (except for sausages, sausages are cheap). The problem is that if you only cook it in the pan it's not very tasty and I just keep adding salt as I eat through it and it isn't very good anyway.
So one day I decided to try and make some tasty chicken with what I had at home and this is what I came up with.
Step 1: Gather Your Ingredients
As you can see in the picture I didn't have much. It's pretty basic stuff.
- and of course chicken.
The idea of marinating something is that you let the ingredients get into the meat, as the acidic ingredient tenderizes it. The oily stuff helps dissolve some of the flavors aswell.
Now, I didn't quite know that at the time, but I have learnt that having a little variety (a few fairly compatible ingredients) makes for really good meals.
Step 2: Preparing the Marinade
Take like a quarter of a little piece of garlic and chop it.
Take a chunk of butter (I put a teaspoonful) and rub it on the chicken, where the skin does not cover the meat.
Add the chopped garlic and rub it with the butter and then add the spices.
It doesn't have to be garlic and butter if you don't like them. Oil will do fine, and you can change the garlic with some other herbs of your preference.
Step 3: Preparing the Marinade Pt. 2
Now pour the wine on the chicken. It doesn't really matter if it washes the spices off. Some will stay on the chicken and it will be cooked later anyway. Don't be greedy with the wine, whatever is left after marinating we'll use for cooking.
Turn the chicken so that the meat is soaked in the wine. It won't absorb it as well if only the skin is soaked.
Add more salt and dissolve it in the wine. Taste the wine, it has to be a little salty and that should be enough salt.
Let the chicken sit there for about two hours so the wine has time to do its job.
Step 4: Let's Cook This
Once time's passed, put the chicken on a pre-heated pan with oil. Use low to medium heat (I have an electric stove that goes from 1 to 6. 6 is extremely hot. 1 does nothing. I use 4 until it heats up, then I turn it down to 3).
I like to put the chicken with the skin facing down first so it gets a bit crispy. After about 15 minutes you can turn it over and let the other side cook for around 10 minutes (you still have to check on it from time to time and make sure it doesn't burn).
Now it's time to pour the wine that was left from the marinade, cover it and let it simmer for about another 10 minutes until the purple of the wine has turned into a darker brown.
You can stick a knife in the chicken to make sure it's cooked in the inside and if not, to let the blood out (sometimes it still bleeds a little bit) and the heat in.
Step 5: It's Ready
I know it doesn't look good, but I always stick a knife in the chicken so that I know it's not raw deep inside. Once it's ready, take it out and eat that nicely cooked and moisty chicken :)
To make it a little bit more french and not eat just chicken check out the next step.
Step 6: Make a Nice Sandwich With That
Since I'm in France I figured I would try and do as the frenchmen do. So I bought myself a baguette and some brie cheese and gouda, too.
Cut the baguette in half (or eat it all, as you wish). Cut it open. Put some slices of cheese, a little butter (I love butter) and then the chicken (previously shredded).
I really liked the combination of butter, brie, bread and chicken. I think it was better than the chicken alone, which was already good.
I hope you like it, and if you do, please vote it on the Dorm Food Contest :P