Are you a part of a cookbook club? I have always wanted to, but never been able to find a group that I wanted join. That was until we moved to Manchester.
A few weeks after we moved to our new hometown back in February, while we were still staying at a hotel, a new friend I made suggested that I should check the activities in the local library. It was a very cold snowy day and I was looking for an opportunity to meet new people and do some more exploring.
Coincidently, on the library’s website there was an announcement about a cookbook club gathering on that day. I decided to check it out and immediately drove to the library. It was one of the best things I have done as I have been enjoying the monthly cookbook club gatherings since then.
A group of mostly retired ladies get together once a month and talk about what they have been cooking, their favorite cookbooks, and other cooking adventures. I am probably the youngest of the bunch, but I love the company and learn so much from everyone in the group.
More than anything, it is so different from the circles that I am in day in and day out and it gives me a different perspective.
During last month’s cookbook club gathering we talked about what we like to cook. Everyone came prepared with their go-to recipe and shared it with the group. This Mediterranean Lemon Chicken with Olives and Potatoes recipe was one of those recipes that was shared. It was an old Martha Steward recipe that stood the test of time.
As I was listening to the lady talking about the raving reviews she gets every time, I decided to give it a try. On my way back home I picked up the ingredients and made it for dinner on that evening.
It is rare that a recipe works 100% and is perfect in my first try. This recipe was that and more. Moist chicken thighs surrounded with potatoes, olives, lemon slices, and fresh thyme and baked in the oven for a meal all prepared in one-pot in less than an hour. Both my husband and I thought it should be shared so here it is.
About this Mediterranean Lemon Chicken with Olives and Potatoes Recipe:
The recipe has two parts.
For the first part, you sear the chicken thighs on the stove-top in an oven-proof skillet (preferably a cast-iron skillet), add potatoes, garlic, and chicken stock and bring it to a boil.
Then you add the olives and thyme and transfer it to a pre-heated oven. In just over 30 minutes, you end up with a delicious dinner.
The hands on time in between searing and peeling and quartering the potatoes is less than 15 minutes, which I think is perfect when you need to put dinner on the table on a weeknight.
A Minor Change to The Original Recipe:
Once you take it out of the oven and plate the chicken and potatoes, you will be left with some juice in the pan. I personally like to serve this dish with my mom’s bulgur pilaf (as seen in the photos) and spoon it over the chicken and pilaf. However, the original recipe suggests adding a tablespoon of cornstarch and a quarter cup of chicken stock and thickening it to turn into a sauce. I personally think that it is not a step that adds to the recipe, but I thought it is worth mentioning just in case if you prefer a thicker sauce.
Green Olives are What Makes This Dish Superb:
In my opinion, what makes this dish so good is the green olives. I have tried it both with inexpensive jarred supermarket olives and with some fancy gourmet-store bought green olives filled with gorgonzola cheese. The one made with the fancy olives was truly superior to the first one. Though both were great, I recommend experimenting with your olive choice. I haven’t tried this yet, but next time I am planning to try it with a combination of green and black olives.
Whether you are planning to serve this one-pot braised chicken dish for your family on a Tuesday night or for a dinner party to your guests, it is guaranteed to impress.
Here Are a Few Other Weeknight Chicken Recipes You Can Make:
- Lightened Up Crispy Cheddar Chicken
- Fennel Orange Chicken
- Chicken Stroganoff Recipe
- Lightened-Up Creamy Chicken and Wild Rice Soup
- Roasted Chicken Pita Wraps with Crispy Chickpeas and Tzatziki
- Chicken Lo Mein
- Oven Baked Chicken Parmesan
- Check out all our easy chicken recipes
Mediterranean Lemon Chicken with Olives and Potatoes
- 6 bone-in skin on chicken thighs (~ 2 pounds)
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 tablespoons olive oil divided
- 2/3 pound Yukon gold potatoes washed and halved (or quartered, depending on the size)
- 6 cloves of garlic minced
- 1 cup chicken broth divided
- ½ cup large green olives pitted
- 1 lemon sliced
- 6-7 sprigs of fresh thyme
- Pre-heat the oven to 450 F degrees.
- Pat dry chicken thighs with paper towels. Season well with salt and pepper.
- Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in an oven-proof skillet. Sear chicken skin-side down until browned in medium heat, 4-5 minutes. Flip and cook the other side for another 3-4 minutes.
- Add in the potatoes and garlic and spread them around the chicken. Pour in the chicken broth. Bring it to a boil.
- Add in the olives. Distribute the slices of lemon and thyme evenly within the skillet.
- Transfer skillet to the oven. Roast, stirring potatoes halfway through, until chicken is fully cooked and tender, 30-35 minutes.
- Serve immediately alongside with your favorite rice, bulgur or salad.
- Please read the blog post for more information as to what to do with the left over juice.
- This recipe is adapted from Martha Steward's Braised Chicken with Potatoes, Olives and Lemon recipe with minor changes.