Let's face it, there's little joy in coming home from school activities or work and being drowned in the task of making a delicious dinner. I don't know about you, but my family expect something super tasty every night.
Everyone has their own tastes and dislikes when it comes to dinner time, but the one dish I know I can put on the table, even after a super busy day, that doesn't get picked apart but rather, devoured within minutes is my Super Tasty Chicken Dinner. With limited time and the thought of slaving over a stove is not appealing, this dish is super easy and a one pot wonder!
Originally my mother in law made a version of this dish, and I really enjoyed it, and to be honest, I was surprised I didn't think of it myself. Her version was much simpler to account for different tastes, and as they are Greek, the influences of lemon and oregano play a heavy role. For me and my crew, I wanted something more substantial and succulent.
What makes this dish yummy is the spices and the marriage of flavours between the vegetables and chicken. It will leave your kitchen smelling heavenly. Hopefully you will find that your family will clean the juices in their bowl with bread.
To ensure you get a mouth wateringly juicy mouthful of meat every time, I suggest using only the maryland or chicken chops (thighs) cut. Save the fancy and overpriced breasts for schnitzels - this dish is by no means glamorous and a cheap cut of meat serves perfectly.
Next is the choice of potatoes, and I always love a good Sebago or Desiree for this meal. They're firm enough to keep their shape and crisp up beautifully on the outside, while maintaining a fluffy mashy centre, perfect for soaking up the sauce.
I have a repertoire of vegetables that suite my family, and by all means, feel free to use your own click of veggies. My recipe is adaptable to suit your tastes, so feel free to add mushrooms, zucchini, eggplant, olives, anchovies or sweet potato. I keep my meal agreeable to my family...
Ingredients (serves 4 hungry monsters)
6 chicken chops OR 4 chicken marylands
4 large potatoes peeled and cut into quarters
1/2 medium red capsicum sliced
2 Tbsp tomato paste
1 teaspoon capers in brine (optional, I use this instead of salt)
1 white or brown onion sliced
2 cloves garlic crushed
1 tablespoon Bavarian Roast Chicken Spice (see notes)
3 tablespoons olive oil
juice of 1/2 lemon
1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees Celsius
2. Pop potatoes in a saucepan with water to cover and bring to the boil. Allow to boil for 5-6 minutes until soft around the edges but still firm. Strain and set aside
3. In a baking dish, add all the ingredients, including the potatoes. Using your hands (my favourite bit) marry the flavours together by pressing the spices into the meat and bruising the onions to release some flavours. Mix well and then cover the dish with aluminium foil (shiny side facing down towards the meat)
4. Place dish in oven covered, for 40 minutes. Then remove cover and cook for a further 30 minutes.
5. In our home we top the dish with a generous dollop of plain yogurt, but feel free to use salad or bread or with herbs. Lick your plate, lips and fingers clean!
1. The spices I am particularly fond of are from a gorgeous shop in Carlton, Melbourne. Here's the link to the spices and their store
Otherwise, this is the mix ...
Sea salt, paprika, mustard seed, rosemary, tomato, garlic, coriander, fennel, chilli, oregano.
2. Other flavours I love with this dish are:
slices of orange with tarragon;
prunes and apricots with walnuts or almonds which forms like a tagine. Incredible flavours.
1/4 tsp ground saffron instead of the spices used above