The word schmaltz is derived from the yiddish language and it is the key ingredient in making matzo balls. What is schmaltz you ask? It is rendered chicken fat. It’s what gives this savory dish its delicious depth of flavor. Schmaltz along with the harrisa, garlic and onion, make this dish a scrumptious weeknight treat. Harrisa is a spicy blend of chili peppers. The recipe calls for harrisa paste, which if you can’t find, you can easily make your own paste with equal parts harrisa powder, water and olive oil.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs (about 3 pounds)
- Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
- 1 small onion, finely chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 15-ounce cans chickpeas, rinsed (I used one can)
- 1 tablespoon harissa seasoning (more is desired) or 1/4 cup of harissa paste
- 1/2 cup low-sodium chicken broth
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
- Lemon wedges for serving
Pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees. Heat oil in a large ovenproof skillet (I used my Le Cruset pot) over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Working in batches, cook chicken until browned, about 5 minutes per side. Then transfer chicken to a plate.
Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of the dripping from the pan (consider saving the dripping for cooking other things). Add onion and garlic and stir often. Cook until softened, about 3 minutes. Add tomato paste and stir, cook until beginning sauce begins to darken, about 1 minute. Add chickpeas, harissa, and broth, bring to a simmer. You can always add more.
Nestle chicken, skin side up, in chickpeas, transfer the skillet to oven. Roast until the chicken is cooked through. 20-25 minutes. Top with parsley and serve with lemon wedges.