By Chef Ella Freyinger

April 2021

2 Servings

I had never felt heartbroken by the passing of someone I did not know, until Anthony Bourdain left this world. My heart ached and I cried for days; the sense of loss was entirely overwhelming. And so, as I grieved, I began to re-watch his tv shows and read his books, trying to find clues and absorb every ounce of his spirit before it dissolved into the ether. I then began to research the traditional recipes he found along his path and started to expand my inspiration when it came to the food I created. One moment that particularly stuck out to me was when he enjoyed spring onions charred and perfectly steamed on one of his trips to Spain. I was enamored with the process and the community surrounding this yearly celebration of alluviums. This recipe is my nod to him and that moment in time. Joy radiating from his being, inspiring people all over the world to fall in love with places and people we do not yet know.

Ingredients

  • FOR THE ONIONS
  • 2 bunches spring onions
  • Olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • FOR THE ROMESCO
  • 1 large bell pepper
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1⁄2 cup toasted hazelnuts
  • 2 tbsp Sherry vinegar
  • 1⁄2 tsp sweet paprika
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1⁄2 cup olive oil
  • kosher salt
  • FOR THE CHICKEN
  • 4 chicken thighs, bone-in and skin-on
  • 1 tsp fennel seeds
  • 1 bulb fennel, thinly sliced
  • 1⁄2 cup Kalamata olives
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 Chicken stock

Steps

  • FOR THE ONIONS
  • Preheat a grill over high heat. Trim the top 2 inches from onions. Place them on a rimmed baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and season with kosher salt. Place onions on the grill and cook for 3-4 minutes per side. They should be evenly charred on all sides. Put back onto the baking sheet and cover tightly with plastic wrap. Let rest for 15 minutes before serving.
  • FOR THE ROMESCO
  • Place the hazelnuts into the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until they become a fine meal. Add All remaining ingredients to the processor and pulse until smooth. Season with salt to taste.
  • FOR THE CHICKEN
  • Preheat oven to 400° F. Place a cast iron skillet or dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  • Pat dry the chicken thighs and season liberally with kosher salt. Arrange the chicken in the skillet skin side down. Cook for 4-5 minutes or until the skin is crisp and golden brown. Flip the chicken and add the fennel seeds to the pan. Cook for 1 minute, until the seeds begin to give off their fragrance. Add the sliced fennel, olives, garlic and healing broth to the skillet, arranging them around the chicken thighs. Place in the oven and cook for 30 minutes.
  • FOR ASSEMBLY
  • I like to serve the spring onions, intact, with a bowl of romesco on the side. To eat the onions you peel back the charred layers and dip the tender flesh into the romesco. Or, if you are like me, eat them whole, charred bits and all. Serve the chicken alongside because, let’s face it. The onions are the star here. Enjoy!