Roasted Chicken with Potatoes, Arugula, & Garlic Yogurt

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The inviting scent of roasted chicken, leeks, and garlic have made this one of our new favorite dishes. Marinated for approximately 30 minutes at room temperature in a blend of olive oil, cumin, and harissa that imparts a smoky earthy flavor lending itself beautifully to the flavors of lemon zest and leeks.  Harissa is one of the basic flavoring ingredients used in Tunisian cuisine. Its versatility is evident in its use as a condiment for meat or fish, as a marinade, with roasted vegetables, and in soups or stews. Top your roasted chicken and potatoes with garlic yogurt and fresh arugula to create a unique combination of flavors and textures that is not only enjoyable to eat but tastes fabulous! I recommend doubling the recipe for leftovers during the week.

Roast Chicken with Potatoes, Arugula, & Garlic Yogurt

1-1/2 lbs chicken thighs

1-1/2 lbs Yukon gold potatoes, halved and cut into 2″ chunks

2-1/2 tsp Kosher Salt, divided

Pepper to taste

2 Tbsp harissa (another thick hot sauce such as Sriracha, may be subbed)

1/2 tsp cumin

4-1/2 Tbsp olive oil

2 large leeks, tender white and green parts only, halved and chopped in thin slices

Zest of 1/2 lemon

1/3 cup plain yogurt (not Greek yogurt)

2 cloves garlic, minced

2-3 big handfuls fresh arugula

1 Tbsp dried dill

Lemon juice, as needed

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Combine chicken and potatoes in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper. In a small bowl whisk together the harissa, olive oil, and cumin. Toss harissa mixture with the potatoes and chicken. Let the chicken and potatoes stand for 30 minutes at room temperature or 8 hours in the refrigerator.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine chopped leeks, lemon zest, 1-1/2 tablespoons olive oil, and a pinch of salt.

Arrange the chicken and potatoes on a large baking sheet or roasting pan and roast at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Toss the potatoes lightly then sprinkle the leeks over the top. Return to the oven and continue roasting until chicken and potatoes are cooked through approximately 30 minutes more.

While chicken is cooking, combine yogurt, minced garlic, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.

When done, top with garlic yogurt, dill, and arugula. Drizzle with lemon juice and olive oil before serving.

Serves 4

Prep time: 25 minutes

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Corned Beef & a Guiness

St. Patrick’s Day is tomorrow and it’s time to cook the traditional corned beef. An easy way to slow cook your corned beef without any worry whatsoever is to use a crock pot. With theIMG_2716 addition of apple juice, the corned beef is guaranteed to come out perfectly tender and full of flavor every time.

Place the corned beef in a crock pot, sprinkle with the seasoning packet, and add just enough apple juice to cover. Cook on low for eight hours or high for four. When done you can transfer some of the liquid to a large pot on the stove to boil your cabbage, potatoes, and carrots but if your family is like mine they may prefer a corned beef sandwich on rye bread with a little sauerkraut, melted swiss,  and a touch of thousand island dressing. Don’t forget a crunchy pickle on the side!

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Sesame Peanut Noodles

Noodles in every way, shape, and form are my downfall! I can’t get enough of them and IMG_2675even loved eating leftover spaghetti for breakfast as a kid. OK, maybe I still do.  Sesame peanut noodles are a favorite because the thin flavor-packed sauce pairs well with a multitude of ingredients–bok choy, snow peas, spinach, grated carrots, bean sprouts, steak, chicken, shrimp…the list goes on. I used left over grilled chicken breasts and whatever veggies I had on hand for this simple dish. Sesame peanut noodles make a great weeknight dinner and you can bring the leftovers to work for lunch the next day–IF you have anything left over!

Sesame Peanut Noodles

1 lbs package of lo mein or spaghetti noodles

4 medium garlic cloves

1 Tbsp fresh ginger

5 Tbsp sesame oil, divided

2/3 cup creamy peanut butter

½ cup soy sauce

6 Tbsp rice vinegar

¼ cup brown sugar

2 tsp vegetable oil

2 cooked chicken breasts

1 bunch bok choy, chopped and white stems removed

½ cup red and/or orange peppers, matchstick slices

1 cup snow peas

6 green onions, sliced on the diagonal

Sesame seeds for garnish (optional)

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook noodles al dente; drain and return to pot. Add 1 Tbsp of the sesame oil to noodles and toss.

Using a food processor or blender add garlic, ginger, peanut butter, soy sauce, rice vinegar, and IMG_2673brown sugar. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.

In a large frying pan on medium-high heat, add vegetable oil and sauté the cooked chicken and vegetables until the vegetables are crisp tender. Add the noodles, and half of the peanut sauce. Toss well then add remaining sauce. Transfer to a platter and garnish with green onions and sesame seeds. Serve immediately.

Serves 4

Prep time: 30 minutes

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