Paprika Mediterranean Chicken
It might shock you, but I have a quasi-schedule here at Macheesmo that I try to keep. To try to keep this schedule, I like to have a few back-up posts ready in case I need to remove myself from the Internet for a few days.
This post has been sitting in that backup queue for awhile now and I decided to move it straight to the top. I’ve noticed thanks to some keen Twitter followers (@thegastronome) that my last few posts have been a bit on the unhealthy side: A cheese and honey sandwich, an alcoholic beverage, and delicious breakfast rolls. This was not on purpose.
I promise it is not my goal to make you larger. It is my goal though to get you excited about cooking. I think this dinner will do that and it just so happens to be pretty healthy!
As a rule, I don’t like boneless, skinless chicken breasts. I find them to be completely flavorless. They need a lot of help, in my opinion, to end up as a tasty dinner. I know a lot of people use them as their default, but I’ve never really been a fan.
I use them in this dish though (healthy!) because there is so much flavor given to the chicken from the awesome paprika oil rub that goes along with it. Let’s make it!
1) Whisk together all the paprika oil ingredients. Can be made in advance.
2) Add 1 tablespoon of the oil to the Greek yogurt and stir together. Store in the fridge until needed.
3) Take 2/3 of the oil and pour it generously over your chicken breasts. Every inch of them should covered with the rub.
4) Bake chicken at 350 degrees F. for about 30 minutes.
5) Open up your garbanzo beans, drain them, and dump them in this bowl along with the tomatoes and add the last of the paprika oil mixture. If you aren’t afraid of cilantro you can throw 1/4 Cup of that in now as well.
6) After your chicken has been cooking for 30 minutes, pull it out and pour your tomato and chickpea mixture evenly around the chicken.
7) Bake again for for 30 more minutes or until chicken is cooked.
Serve with yogurt and rice or couscous.
This dish is shockingly easy to make. First, mix together all of your spiced oil ingredients. I actually don’t even measure the paprika any more. I just add it until it looks like this:
It should be very flavorful. This is the base flavor for the whole meal. You could make this a few hours in advance.
Once it is mixed, take your Greek yogurt and add in about a Tablespoon of the oil mixture. This sauce really makes the dish in my opinion. If you make it a few hours before dinner and let it mellow in the fridge it will be even better.
Next, take about half of your paprika oil, maybe 2/3 of it, and pour it generously over your chicken breasts. Every inch of them should covered with the rub.
Put these guys in the oven at 350 for about 30 minutes. At some point your kitchen will begin to smell like you painted the walls with paprika. That’s a good thing.
We aren’t done with paprika yet. You should still have about 1/2 or 1/3 of your spiced oil in a bowl somewhere. Open up your garbanzo beans, drain them, and dump them in this bowl along with the tomatoes. If you aren’t afraid of cilantro you can throw 1/4 Cup of that in now as well.
Some people have a huge aversion to cilantro though, so I like to just add it as a garnish later for those interested.
After your chicken has been cooking for 30 minutes, pull it out and pour your tomato and chickpea mixture evenly around the chicken.
Then back in the oven for 30 more minutes.
After that hour your chicken should be done but still moist. Depending on your oven that last 30 minutes may only need to be 20. My oven is horrible and I believe it cooks at about 50 degrees cooler than what it is set for.
Basically, you wan to cook it until the chicken is done.
I serve it with a large dollop of the Greek yogurt and Couscous.
This is a really easy meal. You only have to chop two things: garlic and cilantro! It is very warming and great during the Winter. It has become one of our staple dinners over the last few months.
For those of you looking for other healthy dishes on Macheesmo, don’t forget about the categories over on the sidebar. There is healthy cagetegory that has some good stuff in it.