Chicken Stew With Softened Garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 whole cut-up chicken or 3 pounds parts
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 large garlic bulbs, separated into cloves but not peeled
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 3/4 cup water, dry white wine, or chicken stock
- 1 loaf crusty bread, sliced, for serving
- Put the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat.
- When hot, add the chicken, skin side down.
- Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cook, undisturbed but adjusting the heat so the chicken sizzles but doesn't burn, until the pieces release easily from the pan, 5 to 10 minutes.
- Turn and rotate them every few minutes to brown them evenly.
- As the chicken pieces brown, after another 5 to 10 minutes, remove them from the pan and spoon out all but 2 tablespoons of the fat.
- Add the garlic and cinnamon, sprinkle with more salt and pepper, and pour 1/2 cup of the liquid over all.
- Bring to a boil, then adjust the heat so the mixture bubbles but steadily.
- Cover and cook for 30 minutes, then check and add the remaining liquid if the pan looks dry.
- Cover and cook until the chicken and garlic are very tender, another 25 to 35 minutes.
- Transfer the chicken, garlic, and pan drippings to a deep platter and serve, spreading the softened garlic cloves on bread slices.