Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Dinner Tonight: Baked Chicken with Onions, Potatoes, Garlic and Thyme

Wow. I wish that you could have been in my kitchen tonight. The meal that I made, Baked Chicken with Onions, Potatoes, Garlic and Thyme from the October issue of Everyday Food, smelled positively sublime while it was roasting. The whole house filled with the scent of lemons and thyme.

And happily, when it came out of the oven, it tasted just as wonderful as I'd hoped - luscious, perfectly tender chicken, lemons that roasted so thoroughly the practically melted, fragrant roasted garlic, caramelized chunks of red onion, and well-cooked hunks of new potatoes. The dish had very little added fat - I used 2 Tb. of olive oil total, since I halved the recipe - and required very little prep or cleanup. I think in total, I used a baking dish, a cutting board, a knife, a measuring spoon, and a little tupperware container to mix the balsamic vinegar with the olive oil before drizzling it over the chicken and vegetables. It's the ideal one-dish meal and it is one I plan to make again and again from here on out. Delish!

Baked Chicken with Onions, Potatoes, Garlic and Thyme
Source: Everyday Food Magazine, October 2009
Serves 4 - Prep time 10 minutes - Total time 1 hour

1 whole chicken (3 to 3 1/2 pounds), cut into 8 pieces and breasts halved crosswise*
1 pound new potatoes, halved (quartered if large)
1 large red onion, cut into eighths
1 head garlic cloves, separated and left unpeeled**
6 sprigs thyme
1 lemon, quartered
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 Tb balsamic vinegar
coarse salt and ground pepper

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Arrange chicken, potatoes, onion, garlic, thyme and lemon in a 12-by-16 inch roasting pan. Whisk together olive oil and vinegar and drizzle over chicken and vegetables. Toss to combine and season with salt and pepper. Turn chicken skin side up. Roast until chicken is browned and cooked through, about 50 minutes.***

A few notes from my kitchen:

* Since it was me and Mr. Fritz, I subbed boneless/skinless chicken breast, about 1/2 pound total. I'd probably use boneless/skinless again even if I were doing it for more people, because it came out so well without the mess of having to hack up a chicken.

** I peeled my garlic. I didn't want to deal with the skins in the finished dish.

*** My version was done in 40 minutes, probably because it was boneless and skinless. Also, instead of using a roasting pan, I used a small but heavy ceramic baking dish.

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