crispy chicken thighs served over lemony herb orzo and sweet + tangy stewed peppers
6 skin-on chicken thighs (or 4 chicken breasts)
freshly cracked black pepper
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
3 large red bell peppers, thinly sliced
¼ cup white wine vinegar
¼ cup water
1 tbsp honey
1 ½ cups orzo
4 tbsp butter
4 lemon slices
½ cup torn basil leaves
¼ cup dill leaves
2 tbsp chopped parsley
Let the chicken thighs sit at room temperature for at least 15 minutes. Heat a 12” cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Add enough olive oil to coat the bottom. Season the chicken well with salt and freshly cracked black pepper. When the oil is hot, place the chicken skin-side down into the skillet. Cook for about 6 minutes. Lower the heat to medium-low and continue to cook the chicken until the skin is golden and crisp.
Flip the chicken over and cook for just about 2 minutes longer. Transfer the chicken to a plate, skin-side up. Add the shallots to the skillet and cook for a minute or two before adding the red peppers. Stir well and allow the red peppers to become tender and caramelized.
Add the white wine vinegar, water, and honey to the skillet. Bring to a simmer. Place the chicken back into the skillet, skin-side up. Simmer the mixture over medium-low until the chicken is fully cooked through.
Meanwhile, cook the orzo in a large pot of salted, boiling water. Drain the orzo. Return the pot to medium heat and add the butter. Once the butter is melted, add the lemon slices. Cook until caramelized. Stir in the orzo and heat through. Fold in the fresh herbs. Season with salt to taste.
Pour the orzo into a large serving bowl. Arrange the chicken and peppers on top. Garnish with any leftover herbs and a good seasoning of freshly cracked black pepper.