This mediterranean chicken recipe is one of my favorite go-to dishes. Its an entire meal in a pot, and is comfort food at its best! The flavors that develop and the fall-off-the-bone texture are simply too hard to resist. The secret is to keep it very moist, so the chicken doesn't dry. To cut the prep time, and some extra calories, I start out with broiling the chicken on both sides so it gets a beautiful color and the delicious flavors of the charred skin. You can totally skip this step and remove the skin altogether - it will still come out delicious!
4-6 chicken legs, I get the thighs and legs divided
2 medium onions, roughly chopped
1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
1/4 cup deli pitted olives (I love the mixed variation)
4-6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 cup artichokes hearts (frozen)
1-1 1/2 cups brown rice
4 tsp za'atar
1 tbs dried oregano
1 tbs turmeric
1 tbs sumac (optional)
Pinch red chilly flakes
Ground black pepper
2 tbs chicken soup powder, or 1 bouillon cube melted in the water (you can substitute with 1tbs salt and use stock instead of water)
2-3 cups water
1. Place the chicken skin side down on a roasting pan and put under the broiler. move the pan to get equal color. Flip over the chicken skin side up and continue to broil until skin is nicely charred. If you don't have a broiler you can lightly fry them in a pan with a bit of olive oil.
2. Prepare the veggies. Roughly chop the onions, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes and olives.
3. Remove the peel from the lemons: Cut off the base on both sides. With a sharp knife cut along the flesh to remove the skin and membrane. Cut the lemon into slices and roughly chop, removing the seeds. (You want to try and preserve the juice)
4. In a large wide pan (with a lid) start layering the 3/4 of the onions, garlic, tomatoes, olives and lemon. Add all of the artichokes.
5. Add 3/4 the brown rice and sprinkle over half of the spices and chicken soup powder
6. Place the chicken pieces on the rice skin side up.
7. Add the remaining rice and veggies in between the chicken pieces
8. Sprinkle the second half of the spices.
9. Carefully add the liquids just until the rice is covered.
10. Cover the pan and simmer on the stovetop for 60 minutes. You can also finish cooking in the oven - at 325F (160C). I like to total the cooking time to 90 minutes, for fall-of-the-bone chicken.