Chicken thighs can be a surprisingly succulent and flavorful Cabernet Sauvignon pairing. Braised in red wine, savory herbs and subtly sweet figs, the chicken has the depth and intensity required to stand up to a robust red wine like the 2015 Tonella Vineyard Cabernet.
FOR THE SPICE MIXTURE:
Preheat oven to 350 F. In small bowl, combine spices. Pat chicken dry and season well with salt and then spice mixture on both sides, including rubbing spices under skin. Rest for 20 minutes or refrigerate 2 hours. In a deep, oven-safe skillet or Dutch oven, heat 2 Tbsp olive oil over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Add chicken, skin side down, and cook for 5 minutes until golden brown (lower heat if it smokes). Turn chicken over and brown briefly - about 2 minutes. Transfer chicken to a plate. Add shallots and garlic to pan and cook over medium heat until soft. Stir in tomato paste, wine, and broth. Add bay leaves and sprigs of thyme/rosemary. Season with pinch of salt and simmer 4 minutes. Carefully nestle chicken into liquid, leaving the skins exposed. Add dry figs to the pot. Bring to a simmer. Put chicken in oven and cook, uncovered, until tender and liquid is reduced by half, about 40 minutes. Check halfway through to be sure liquid is still present. While chicken is cooking, heat a small pan with a very small drizzle of olive oil. Add mushrooms and sauté. About 10 minutes before the chicken has finished cooking, add mushrooms. Return to oven for those last 10 minutes. Remove from oven and stir in lemon juice and parsley. Serve with buttered rice, toasted farro, or mashed potatoes.