Saturday, April 4, 2009

Mediterranean Chicken Bake

I found this recipe in an Australian food magazine called "Good Taste" (thanks dad for the mag) April 2006 issue. I'll be honest.. there is nothing that I would really change about it except that I like to chop up my herbs and not leave them whole. The beauty of this recipe is that it's a one dish meal... vegetables and meat all cook together. Another great thing is it uses chicken thighs and drum sticks, one of the cheapest meats you can find, so it's very economical as well.

You can either get them skinless or with skin on, I recommend the boneless thighs.

Serves: 4-6 (depending on the size of your kids appetites)

Prep: 15 minutes

Cooking: 1 hour


1 tbs olive oil
6 chicken drumsticks
6 chicken thighs
6 small potatoes peeled and halved or even quartered
2 ripe tomatoes diced (optional if your family doesn't like tomatoes)
1/2 cup kalamata olives chopped/sliced (optional--but don't replace them with canned black olives, it's kalamata or nothing)
2 garlic cloves very finely chopped
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary, pull off leaves and chop finely
1/2 cup dry white wine (NOT optional.. just a cheap white wine works fine)
generous pinch of salt
Freshly ground black pepper

1. Pre-heat oven to 390 F. Heat the oil in a pan over medium heat. Add the chicken drumsticks and cook, turning occasionally, for 5 minutes or until browned all over (if you have skin on your chicken let it get crispy all over mmmmm). Transfer to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Repeat with the chicken thigh cutlets. Remove and add to plate.

2. Add the potato to the remaining oils in the pan and cook, turning occasionally, until golden brown and starting to get a little crispy on the outside (it does not need to cook fully just give it a crusty edge.. the rest will happen in the oven with the chicken).

3. Spray non stick spray on casserole dish, place chicken and potato. Evenly spread it all together. Top with tomato, olives and garlic. It gets a little tricky spreading the garlic but do your best to distribute it evenly over all chicken and potatoes. Pour over the wine. Season with salt and pepper.

4.Bake in oven for 45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and potato is tender. Don't stir it while it cooks.. just trust the white wine and chicken juices to do their thing.

Serve immediately.

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