Crispy Chicken Thighs with Caramelized Corn, Cherries, and Spinach
An easy, 5-ingredient weeknight dinner that takes advantage of summer produce without getting too fancy.
Recipe by Christine Byrne
4 large bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 cup fresh corn kernels (about 3 ears)
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup cherries, pitted and halved
4-5 cups baby spinach, packed (1 5-ounce bag)
1. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat until it is extremely hot and about to smoke. (You don’t need to put any oil in the skillet.) Season chicken thighs liberally with salt and pepper on both sides, then place them skin-side down in the hot cast iron skillet, being sure not to crowd them. Sear them over medium-high heat until the skin has started to crisp and some of the fat has rendered out into the pan, about 1 minute. Turn the heat down to medium, and continue to cook until the skin is completely crispy and the meat has started to cook, about 3 minutes. Transfer partially cooked chicken thighs to a plate, skin side up, leaving all of the rendered chicken fat in the pan.
2. With the pan still over medium heat, add the corn kernels and and saute them, stirring occasionally, until they start to caramelize, about a minute. Add the sliced red onion and season with salt and pepper, then cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is soft and translucent, about 3 minutes. Add the halved cherries and cook until the cherries soften and start to release some of their juice, about a minute. Add spinach and cook, stirring constantly, just until the spinach has started to wilt.
3. Push the vegetable mixture to one side of the pan, and add the chicken thighs back to the pan on the other side, skin side up. Cook until chicken is cooked through, about 5 minutes (when you cut into the chicken next to the bone, there should be no pink).
Divide the vegetable mixture among four plates, and top each one with a chicken thigh.