Braised Chicken with Roasted Squash & Mustard Greens Recipe

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Who says Christmas dinner has to be turkey? 

The secret to creating a holiday gathering menu that your guests won't soon forget is to feature ingredients and flavours that they wouldn't expect, but that still evoke those "comfort food" feelings that make holiday feasting so special. 

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This recipe for braised chicken thighs combines rich, slightly sweet flavours that contrast beautifully with the slightly spicy mustard greens. The texture of the roasted squash brings it all together and gives the dish a belly-warming touch!

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INGREDIENTS

6-8 medium to large skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs, patted dry

Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper to taste

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 bunch green onions, white and pale green parts sliced into 1-inch pieces, dark green parts thinly sliced

1 dried chile, or alternatively 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes

1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled, thinly sliced

1 cup  white wine

½ cup Braggs liquid aminos, or tamari gluten free soy sauce

3 tablespoons cane sugar

2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

2 cups chicken broth, divided

1 acorn squash, halved lengthwise, seeds removed, sliced ½ inch thick

1 bunch mustard greens, tough stems removed, leaves torn

2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar

2 teaspoons toasted sesame seeds

1. Heat a large pan over medium heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper, and add to pan to brown thighs on both sides, working in batches to avoid overloading the pan. You don not need to cook the chicken all the way through, just yo add the brown crisp on the outside. Place already browned chicken on plate while you work on the rest.

2. In the same pan you browned the chicken in, add green onions (make sure to reserve the dark green for garnish), chilli, & ginger and cook, stirring often until golden. Add wine, sugar, sesame oil, braggs and 1 cup of broth and bring to a simmer. Return chicken to the pan, placing skin side up. Place a lid on the pan, and bring the liquid to a boil. Simmer for 25-35 minutes or until cooked all the way through, then remove chicken.

3. Add  the sliced squash and the remaining 1 cup of broth. Push the squash down to submerge it, and the sprinkle collards greens over top. Bring to a boil, then simmer this for 10 minutes until the squash is tender. Uncover the pan at this stage,  and turn heat to high to reduce the liquid by about two thirds. This will create a thicker sauce.

4. Remove pan from heat and add vinegar. Add chicken back to the pan, stirring to coat it in the delicious sauce.

5. Garnish with sliced dark part of  green onion and sesame seeds, and serve with your choice of grain!

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Kayla Sorley