1 1/2 pounds of chicken thighs 6 chicken thighs used with skin on
2 pounds of russet potatoes sliced 1/8 inch
1 medium yellow onion sliced
1 tablespoon of paprika
1 tablespoon of cumin
1 teaspoon of salt
3 tablespoons of olive oil
INGREDIENTS FOR OLIVE AND FETA TAMPENADE
1 cup of Kalamata olives pits removed
2 oz of feta cheese
2 tablespoons of capers
3 garlic cloves minced
3 tablespoons of fresh Italian parsley
1/4 cup of roasted red peppers
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1. This is a Mediterranean inspired dinner I thought of while eating a Mediterranean salad for lunch. I wanted something a little more heartier for dinner and I wanted a one pot dish and this is what I came up with. You start with bone and skin on chicken thighs but you do want to remove the bone. Flip the chicken thigh over and feel with you fingers where the bone travels through the meat. With a butcher's knife or pairing knife cut along the length of the bone separating the meat from the bone. You want to curve you knife with the curve of the bone until you can slide the knife under the bone then rock back and forth curving the knife upward and away from you until the bone separates from the meat. Keep the skin attached to the chicken thigh.
2. The feta and olive tapenade is very easy to toss together. I find it easy working with a food processor but if you don't have one it is not needed just chop up the olives with a knife and blend everything together. The most important tip I can give you is to rinse the Kalamata olives and capers before adding them to the food processor because everything in this tapenade has a very high sodium content and does not need any extra salt. In the food processor add olives, capers, feta, parsley, roasted red peppers, lemon juice, minced garlic and olive oil and pulse the food processor just a few time to combine everything and to chop up the whole olives. I don't like to blend this tapenade into a mush I like to see the chunks of olives and roasted red peppers.
3. Stuffing the chicken thighs is very easy it's almost like Thanksgiving you want to run your fingers under the skin of the chicken thigh to loosen the skin without removing it from the chicken. Take around 2 tablespoons of the olive and feta mixture and stuff it under the chicken thigh's skin. Then slightly press down to evenly distribute the tapenade under the skin. I use a sheet baking pan with a wire rack so the sliced potatoes can cook underneath the chicken thighs.
4. When all the chicken thighs are stuffed it is time to slice the onion and potatoes you want to wait until now because the sliced potatoes will start to oxidize and turn brown. Slice the potatoes about 1/8 inch with a knife or I used my mandolin to make it easy. Foil line the baking pan for easy clean up. Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil on the bottom of the foil lined pan this does seem like much oil but all the fat will render from the chicken skins and come down and flavor the potatoes. Don't forget to salt and pepper the potatoes because potatoes loves salt. Place the stuffed chicken on top of the potatoes and onions.
5. In a small bowl add paprika, cumin and 1 teaspoon of salt then add 3 tablespoons of olive oil and stir to combine everything. With you kitchen brush you want to brush the tops of the chicken skin with paprika and cumin oil don't worry if some of the oil falls down on the potatoes that is perfectly fine. This oil rub gives boat loads of flavor to the chicken and potatoes. My favorite part of this one pot dish is the smoky rub renders out of the chicken skin and flavors the potatoes. Place directly in a pre heated 375 degree oven for 55 minutes and dinner is ready. If you are the one who likes more of a crispy potato when the chicken is done after 55 minutes remove the wire rack spill out half of the rendered fat from the chicken skin and place back in the oven for 10 to 15 minutes until desired crispiness.