Chicken with Tart Grape Sauce

Verjus is made from sour green grapes. Its tart, fruity flavor provides a refreshing balance to the garlic, which becomes very sweet after cooking.–Paula Wolfert

Chicken with Tart Grape Sauce Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 50 M
  • Serves 6


  • 4 pounds meaty chicken legs, at room temperature
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 1/2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 12 plump garlic cloves, whole but not peeled
  • 1/3 cup dry white wine
  • 6 to 7 tablespoons verjus (Buy it)
  • 3 cups unsalted homemade chicken stock or low-sodium canned chicken broth, reduced to 1 cup
  • 12 sour green grapes, preferably tart
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley


  • 1. Trim away any excess fat from the chicken legs. Dry well and rub with salt and pepper.
  • 2. Set a large, deep skillet, preferably a sauteuse, over moderately high heat. Add 2 1/2 tablespoons of the butter, then the chicken, skin side down, and the garlic cloves. Brown for 1 minute each side, shaking the skillet to keep the chicken and garlic from sticking.
  • 3. Reduce the heat to low, cover the skillet tightly, and cook for 10 minutes. Uncover the skillet, tilt, and skim the fat off the pan juices. Turn the chicken over. Add the white wine, cover again, and cook slowly for another 10 minutes.
  • 4. Uncover the skillet, add 5 tablespoons of the verjus, and quickly cover the pan so that chicken pieces absorb all the aroma and flavor. Cook slowly for 5 minutes longer.
  • 5. Add 3/4 cup of the stock and cook for 5 minutes. Raise the heat and add the butter and the remaining stock and verjus. Swirl the skillet over the heat to combine the ingredients. Add the grapes and warm through. Season the sauce with salt and pepper to taste.
  • 6. Arrange the chicken, garlic, and grapes on a warm platter. Pour the sauce over the chicken. Sprinkle with the parsley and serve hot.
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