Friday, April 20

Oregano Chicken, Potato, & Tomato Roast

My cooking style is generally pretty quick and easy, but sometimes taking a few more minutes to attend to small details really makes a difference in a dish. This recipe for roasted chicken, potatoes, and tomatoes requires a little bit of extra attention and steps I’d usually just skip altogether (like peeling tomatoes), but it causes ordinary ingredients to get elevated into something much more complex. The tomatoes break down and blend with the chicken juices and oregano oil to form a delicious sauce that reduces and coats the meat and potatoes with tons of flavor. I like to add a little freshness at the end with a pile of arugula tossed with fresh lemon juice and olive oil. It’s a dish that’s worth the effort, and since you’re already going through the trouble of making it, you might as well have it for leftovers a second night.

Oregano Chicken, Potato, & Tomato Roast:
  • Add 1 lb. of fingerling* potatoes to a small pot of cold water, cover with a lid, and bring to a boil for 20 minutes, or until just tender.
  • Use a sharp knife to make a shallow x-shaped cut in the top of 14 oz. of large cherry tomatoes and add to the pot of water in the last minute of cooking time.**
  • Drain the potatoes and tomatoes and set aside in a bowl to cool slightly, then slip the skins off of the tomatoes and use your palm to flatten the potatoes and break them up slightly.
  • Meanwhile, slice 1 lb. boneless skinless chicken thighs into thin strips and add to a hot pan with 1 tbsp. olive oil.
  • Cook for 8 minutes, or until nicely browned, then add to a bowl with the tomatoes and potatoes.
  • Meanwhile, add 3-4 tbsp. fresh oregano leaves and 1 pinch of kosher salt to a mortar and pestle*** and bash until the leaves are broken and have released some of their oil.
  • Add in 4 tbsp. olive oil and 1 1/2 tbsp. red wine vinegar and mix together.
  • Add the oregano mixture to the chicken and veggies and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Transfer the mixture to a baking dish and cook in a 400°F oven for 40 minutes.
  • Remove and let cool slightly. Serve with bread (for mopping up juices) and a handful of arugula tossed with a squeeze of lemon and a drizzle of olive oil.

Serves four - five
*Or any small, waxy potato.
**The point here is not to cook the tomatoes, just to make it easy for their skin to come off.
***If you don't have a mortar and pestle you can just pulse the mixture in a small food processor.