Monday, April 4, 2011

Roast Chicken and Vegetables

I got a great deal on a family pack of chicken thighs the other day at Meijer. Being a family of one (unless I drop something on the floor, in which case it belongs to Stanley and his super hound nose), I had to search for some ways to use it all up.  I found this recipe on Epicurious and the reviews had me excited to make it. 

I loved the flavors in the dish, but it needed some tweaking. I was surprised, since the reviews were mostly raves.  My own review was mixed. I usually follow a recipe the first time I try something and then make any adjustments the next time around. But this time I couldn't help it.  I added onion and a few garlic cloves to the vegetable mix, which turned out well. I think it would also be great using rutabagas or parsnips as a stand-in for the potatoes.  For the chicken, I added a little bit of sage to the herb mix and also a tiny bit of onion powder. Overall, the dish was quite easy and very tasty. My big issue was with the oil. There was just way too much of it.  For future reference, you could either omit the oil entirely during the prep, or remove the skin from the chicken before roasting.  I think the meat would get dried out without the skin and it does lend some flavor to the veggies, so I'd be inclined to ditch the olive oil. The herb rub will stick to the chicken if it's moistened with water or cooking spray, and the pan drippings will be more than enough to toss the potatoes around in. I don't care for the chicken skin, so I just peeled it off before serving.

Here's the original recipe:

Oven-Roasted Chicken Thighs with Carrots and Yukon Gold Potatoes
Bon Appetit, March 2009

Makes 6 servings
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 6 large chicken thighs with skin and bones (preferably organic; about 2 1/4 pounds total)
  • 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons dried thyme
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated or ground nutmeg
  • 2 pounds unpeeled medium Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed, cut into 2-inch-long, 1/2-inch-thick spears
  • 2 pounds medium carrots, peeled, cut into 2-inch-long, 1/2-inch-thick spears
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
Preheat oven to 450°F. Coat large rimmed baking sheet with 1 tablespoon oil. Place chicken on baking sheet. Turn to coat with oil and set skin side up. Mix salt, thyme, 1½ teaspoons pepper, and nutmeg in small bowl. Sprinkle half of mixture over chicken. Roast until chicken starts to brown and some fat has rendered, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine potatoes, carrots, 2 tablespoons oil, and remaining salt/thyme mixture in large bowl. Transfer thighs to medium bowl; set aside. Transfer potato-carrot mixture to same baking sheet; turn to coat with drippings. Roast until vegetables soften, 30 minutes. Place thighs on vegetables; pour accumulated juices from chicken over. Return sheet to oven. Roast until chicken is cooked and vegetables brown, 15 minutes longer.
Place chicken on platter; top with chives.

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