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question about braised chicken thighs technique

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone.


A few days ago I braised chicken in beer. Really good dish, with fennel and coriander seeds.


Of course I browned the chicken first, until the skin was sort of light brown and very crispy. I then did all the other stuff (sweating the veg, reducing down the beer), put it it, added water (no stock unfortunately) and let it simmer for a good hour-hour and a half, until I got tender juicy chicken. That was ok, the problem was the skin. It wasn't crispy anymore. It had a bit of the caramelised flavour, but no texture. It was soggy and not very appealing.


I will say, that having no paper towels or clean kitchen towels (friend's kitchen...) I didn't pat the chicken dry before browning it, but straight from the package, seasoned it and into the pan. It took forever to brown, ofcourse, but eventually it did.

The chicken was fresh and I was using olive oil for fat.

Is this the reason for the soggy skin?

when I braise meat like that, and even for a lot longer, it still retains a bit of texture where it was caramelised.


your thoughts\suggestions much appreciated.

post #2 of 8

I had the exact same question a few weeks ago. My mom use to always do a braised chicken thigh dish in fish sauce and chicken stock but I never liked how the skin would sog out. I Googled Braised chicken thighs and came across this technique/recipe: http://www.stellaculinary.com/recipes/braised-chicken-thighs-world-famous


The dish was really yummy and the skin on the chicken thighs stayed nice and crisp. I made it for my mother and father and they were very impressed (which is no small achievement). They especially liked the reduced sauce served over steamed rice.


Hope this helps,



post #3 of 8

First off, doesn't it sound kind of silly to reduce beer and then add water?  Anyways, when I do braised thighs with the skin on, I tend to gravitate towards recipes that are sweet.  Sugar pretty much eliminates your problem.  Think about something like chicken char siu as a technical example.

post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

reducing beer by half then adding one part water does not taste like just a beer :)


I though about doing what they did in the website, sort of grill the top, I should buy a nice iron pot and try.

Should buy an iron pot anyway, actually.

post #5 of 8

Ciao Navot6, the "problem" you find with the skin is not your foult or anything OK put in this way when you browning the chicken you actually dry from the juices or water the skin itself, but when you add the beer you give back the fluids to the skin, become soft again there are a couple of techniques to avoid this and if you are agree i will explain to you>

post #6 of 8

1 keep the two separated till serving and use the chicken stock to make the sauce

2 you don-t need to have all around skin crispy but just the one face your costumer, brown the tight all around then you add the beer leave the top out of the liquids, to make very crispy brush the tight with a lemon wedge and salt  before you stir fry. oven cooking

3  pass the tight in honey and follow the point two 

post #7 of 8

one more thing, is necessary when you cook water, try to put last 5 min of cooking beer again to refresh the flavor

post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 

Thanks ricordano, good tips there

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