April in Paris... Not! And not April in Naples either; but it could be if you serve this dish. What it is... its still April in the Midwest and though we just had a touch of summer yesterday, today is back to normal northern temps which can give anyone the blues. That is why, I knew my sweetie on his way home would be thinking, I hope she is making my favorite - Mediterranean Chicken.
And, I was. This dish is awesome because it kicks off the blues and it is fast and frugal. How? Because, not only do you get a great evening meal, you also get a really good chicken stock for future uses.
To begin, you will need to buy fresh cut chicken thighs, skin on and bone in. Why? They are best for stock. If you don't have onion, pick some up along with Kalamata as well as Green Mediterranean olives, spinach infused pasta, and a small can of roasted tomatoes. I also recommend a bottle of Chianti from Tuscany... not Mediterranean just the right wine.
Remember, we first want to create a rich stock so you will fill a large stock pot with water, add 1 tsp of salt and one whole onion, peeled and halved. Once the water boils, add your chicken thighs along with fresh dried herbs: parsley, mint, oregano and rosemary. This should simmer for about 40-45 min. After that time, remove the chicken thighs and set aside. Reduce the heat on the stock to low. Take a skillet and on med. heat melt in olive oil and coconut oil, add red pepper flakes, garlic powder and dried herbs. When the oils are hot, lay in your now pre-cooked thighs, skin side down. Let the sizzle until browned on both sides.
Add 1/2 cup of both Kalamata and Green olives and then bring in some of the onion from the stock along with about 1/4 cup of stock. Cover and let sizzle while you open the roasted tomatoes. Add the tomatoes, cover and simmer on low heat for 20 min. As a finale, add 2-3 tbs of heavy cream, uncover and let simmer while you prepare the spinach pasta. Use some of the stock to cook the pasta, adding 1-1 water/stock.
Put it all together, drain the pasta once tender and ladle over the top the chicken and sauce.
~Tutti a Tavola!
*and stock left over to use the rest of the week