2 tablespoons olive oil
1 large yellow onion, coarsely chopped
12 small bones, chicken thighs with skin
1 cup dry white wine
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 fennel bulb, cut, cored and sliced
4 sprigs of thyme
2 cups apple cider
3 Granny Smith apples, cored and sliced
4 bay leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Generous pinch of saffron (optional)
Heat the olive oil in a large deep skillet over medium high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Place half of the face skin of chicken, pan down, and cook, without turning, until skin is golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes. Transfer to a plate and repeat with remaining chicken. After transfer of the second batch of grilled chicken with the first, add the onion, garlic and fennel to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, until golden minutes, 6-7.
Add wine and bring to boil. Add cider and bring to boil again. Nestle chicken (with any accumulated juices) and apples in the liquid along the bay leaf thyme and saffron. Bring to a boil, then cover and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, about 30 minutes.
Stir gently and simmer vigorously, uncovered, until sauce is just thickened, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve.