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Crispy Chicken Thighs With Kale & Croutons

Let your skillet do the work in this great recipe from Food52, and enjoy a supremely tasty dinner. Tender young spring greens make this particularly easy, with no need to pre-blanch the kale.


1 tablespoon olive oil
6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
10 cups chopped kale, chard or spinach (about 10 ounces)
3 cups torn bread chunks (about 6 ounces)
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1/8 to 1/4 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
1 t cider vinegar, or juice of half a lemon

Add the olive oil to a large, heavy skillet, preferably cast-iron, and set over medium heat.

Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper, then add them to the skillet, skin side down.

Allow the thighs to cook, without moving, until the fat has rendered and the skin is deeply golden brown and crispy, 15 to 30 minutes. (Reduce heat to medium-low if the skin begins to burn before it gets evenly golden brown.)

Turn the thighs over and continue cooking until the other side is deeply golden brown and the meat closest to the bone is cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes more.

When done, transfer the chicken thighs to a plate, leaving all the fat in the pan. Immediately add the bread to the pan. Toss in the fat and spread into an even layer. Now leave alone until golden-brown and toasty. Add the garlic and pepper flakes and toss. Let toast for a minute, then add the kale and toss. Cook for 5 or so minutes, until everyone is hot and happy.

Add cider vinegar or squeeze lemon juice on top.

Season with salt to taste.

Nestle the chicken thighs back in the pan and serve immediately.