This recipe is a twist on one I played with recently as a recipe test. The original, which was delicious, called for using garlic and oil cured black olives along with a mix of fresh herbs and the chicken. I didn't dare mess with the garlic (except to add even more), but was itching to put my newly created preserved lemons to use, and so came up with my own version of this easy, weeknight meal.
The technique is foolproof, very straightforward and easily adaptable to your tastes. Arthas is a lemon-caper junkie, so I definitely had him in mind as I was whipping up this dish. The bold tang of the lemons along with the salty POP of the capers really makes your taste buds stand up and take notice, and the sweet roasted garlic and copious use of fresh herbs provide for a nice balance on the plate.
You MUST serve this up with a fresh loaf of crusty bread. Why? Because the meltingly sweet garlic bathed in herb oil begs to be slathered on a warm piece of bread, that's why. We had ours with a warm baguette, some herbed couscous and a fresh green salad, and it couldn't have been better. You'll also be pleased to know that this recipe is certified "left-over worthy" by our resident tester of such matters, the world's greatest eater of savory excess, Arthas. He had both the chicken and a few garlic clove smeared toasts the other morning before school and proclaimed the unorthodox breakfast "freakin' awesome!". I can't imagine what his first period teacher thought as she smelled him from across the room….probably thought he was trying to fend off vampires or something.
Cheers – Steve
Roasted Chicken with Garlic, Capers and Preserved Lemon
- 20 chicken thighs
- 30 cloves of garlic, peeled but left whole
- 1/3 cup capers, rinsed
- 1/2 cup chopped preserved lemon (just the rind, not the pulp) about 1 1/2 lemon's worth
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 2 tablespoons finely minced rosemary
- 2 tablespoons finely minced thyme
- 2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 1/2 cup EVOO
- kosher salt and fresh black pepper to taste
- Heat the oven to 450℉ and position a rack in the middle.
- In a large bowl toss the chicken, oil, rosemary, thyme, and red pepper flakes.
- Arrange the thighs on a large, rimmed baking sheet skin side up. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, toss the garlic cloves throughout the pan and pop it in the oven. Let cook for about 20 minutes.
- Pour the wine over the chicken and stir the garlic cloves to help them cook evenly, cook for another 10 minutes. Add the capers and the lemon and cook for a final 15 minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked.
- Remove from the oven, tent with foil and let sit for 10-15 minutes to rest.
- Serve the chicken with spoonfuls of pan jus laced with lemon and capers, and a couple of garlic cloves per person.