The Magical Properties of Basil and Balsamic Vinegar

Guys, I did a thing. A magical, wonderful, beautiful thing.  I’m so glad I had the presence of mind to take a picture first because this meal did not exist for very long.

I have a deep everlasting love for all things Italian. Gelato. Biscotti. Pasta. Fresh basil. Tomato sauce. Balsamic vinegar….most of them are edible things, clearly. Rachel and I have goals to make this a travel blog as well as a food blog, someday down the road. Mostly so that we can go to Italy and eat all the things.
This recipe I bring to you today is not technically Italian cuisine. I put my own Italian spin on this old family favourite and it really just took it to a whole other level. I had fresh basil in my fridge for once and as I was making dinner I was thinking to myself, “Self, I bet that basil would be a really nice accent to this already rock star of a meal.” And I replied, “Self, you are a genius.”
It’s just a Mutual Admiration Society all up in here.
And so the basil was added and, lo, the heavens did open and shone down upon our dinner and it was blessed.
The original recipe is a simple Balsamic Chicken Thighs recipe. Another one I learned from me dear Ma. It’s a quick and easy weeknight meal, nicely paired with rice and veggies or a salad. Or it can be classed up for a nice dinner with friends. The tang of the vinegar is tempered by the honey, and it works well with either boneless/skinless or skin on chicken thighs.  In fact, the skin gets all crispy and caramelised, which is completely amazing. The balsamic sauce reduces a little and becomes a little syrupy, and the onions also caramelise and it’s all just so delightful!
My husband had made pane toscana over the weekend (which is only my favourite thing ever), and there was one loaf left. I decided I wanted an open faced sandwich instead of rice, so I sliced it in half and toasted it up. Then I piled on the chicken and doused the whole mess in the sauce, then topped it off with some chopped basil. I started out with a knife and fork, I promise I did, but about halfway through I just gave up and used my hands because OH MY GOSH.
I hope this has piqued your interest! Here’s the recipe.

Balsamic Chicken Thighs

Prep: 5 min Cook: 45 min
Temp: 400 F Serves: 4
  • 8 chicken thighs
  • 2 T Balsamic vinegar
  • 2 T Honey
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 white onion, chopped in wedges
  • 3 garlic cloves, crushed
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • fresh basil, chopped
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. In a baking dish, combine vinegar, honey, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Stir to dissolve honey.
  2. Add onion and garlic, stirring to coat onions in sauce.
  3. Add chicken, turning to coat.
  4. Cook for 45 min, checking regularly to keep from scorching.
  5. Garnish with fresh basil and serve with rice, scalloped potatoes, or pane toscana
Happy eating! We would love to hear from you!