If you have time to marinate the chicken, it will be that much more tender (but you don’t have to). You can let the chicken marinate for anything from 30 minutes to up to 3 days in the refrigerator. You can also marinate the chicken, and freeze the marinade and chicken together. That way, when you’re ready to cook, simply brown the garlic in butter, throw in the frozen chicken and marinade (skipping the step where you sear the chicken), and just cook it in the Instant Pot.
You can double up on the sauce ingredients, and save some of the extra sauce to serve over asparagus or other steamed vegetables. You could add in a cup or so of mushrooms to this dish and have a more complete meat and vegetable dish in one go. If you are dairy-free or kosher, use coconut milk or coconut cream for the cream, and coconut or olive oil for the butter. If you are vegetarian, use a hearty vegetable like butternut squash or even turnips instead of the chicken. If you don’t have herbes de Provence, sub Italian blend herbs or even Greek blend herbs for a slightly different taste.
Last thing: Go easy on the salt in this recipe. Start with the 1/2 teaspoon specified and add more as needed. —Urvashi Pitre
Mix all the ingredients for the marinade (from the herbes de Provence to the minced garlic), using a wire whisk to emulsify the oil and vinegar together.
Add in chicken thighs and allow to marinate at room temperature 30 minutes. If you need to marinate for longer, put in the refrigerator.
When ready to cook, heat a heavy-bottomed pan. When it is hot, add the butter and allow it to melt. Add chopped garlic and sauté 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the chicken, leaving behind as much of the marinade as you can. (Do not discard the marinade!) Cook the chicken thighs so they can lightly brown on one side, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the marinade and 1/4 cup water. Cover the pot and allow the thighs to cook 10 minutes, turning them halfway through, until they reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
Remove the chicken to a plate and add 1/4 cup cream into the pot, mixing well with the liquid. As soon as the sauce thickens, pour it over the chicken thighs and serve with rice, noodles, or potatoes.
Dr. Urvashi Pitre is the President of a global marketing consulting firm, and also the author of the best-selling Indian Instant Pot Cookbook, one of Amazon’s Best Books of 2017.
She combines her training as a scientist with her desire to make fast, healthy, authentic, global cuisine, and experiments extensively to create the most streamlined recipes that use fresh ingredients.
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