Cherry Balsamic Chicken Skewers! There's something about summer that just warms my soul, other than the heat of course. Having barbecues, rooftop bars, hearing the Mr. Softy truck ride through your neighborhood, the swimming pool opening up... the list could go on forever! One thing that I always look forward as the weather begins to warm is cherry season. I love cherries. They're SO good for you and food-wise, there's a ton that you can do with them. You can really only find fresh cherries from June to July (at least where I live), so it's always such a treat when entering the grocery store or farmers market and seeing cherries for sale.
Cherry Balsamic Chicken Skewers
Because this is a sweet and savory dish, I like to treat it as such and tend to the sweet aspects as well as the savory and then combine the two. First, we make a cherry sauce which is the base of this dish. You could easily use this sauce for just about anything sweet, it's similar to the type of sauce that goes on top of New York style cheesecake! Then, saute garlic, shallots, and mushrooms in a separate pan and add in some balsamic vinegar and chicken broth... then combine. When I tell you that these two flavors together are just magical, believe me. You have to try this!
1 ½ cups fresh cherries
½ cup water
½ cup sugar
1 tsp dried thyme
pinch of salt
1 tbsp lemon OR lime juice
1 tbsp cornstarch
5-6 pieces of boneless skinless chicken thighs
4 cloves of garlic
1 cup mushrooms
3 tbsps olive oil
¼ cup chicken broth
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
Salt and pepper to taste
- Pat chicken thighs dry with a paper towel, skewer the chicken, sprinkle with salt and pepper and put in the refrigerator. If your cherries have pits, remove them prior to the next step.
- In a medium sauce pan, add sugar, fresh cherries, and water. Allow this to come to a boil and add thyme. Reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. In a small bowl, whisk together corn starch and lemon juice. Stir cornstarch and lemon into cherry mixture, bring to a boil again, and set aside to cool and thicken.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- In a skillet/pan, add olive oil and sear chicken thighs on both sides until brown (about 3-5 minutes). Remove the chicken from the pan and add in garlic and shallots and cook for 3 minutes (add more oil to the pan if needed). Add in mushrooms and cook until they begin to soften. Stir in balsamic vinegar, chicken broth, and the cherry sauce and cook until sauce thickens.
- Add chicken to an oven safe container and cover the chicken completely in the cherry balsamic sauce.
- Bake for 15 minutes.