Thursday, September 24, 2009

Hunger Challenge Chicken In the Oven (Regular, Toaster or Microwave)

This is a variant of a dish I make often (but never the same way twice). This easy version can be made in a regular or toaster oven for those with limited cooking options. (You could even make it in a microwave, just substitute plastic wrap for the foil and cut the liquids in half.)

I thought it would be good for the Hunger Challenge since this version costs about $4 depending on where you shop, or about $1 a serving.

If you have some around the house, paprika would be a nice add on. Sprinkle about a half teaspoon or so on the chicken thighs before putting them in the oven.

The recipe is easily doubled (just use a larger pan in the regular oven) and leftovers taste even better. One note: I don't give cooking times since toaster oven and regular oven cooking times vary so much. Cut into a thigh when pressing on it offers some resistance to check if it is cooked through.

One Dish Baked ChickenServes 4

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs
2 Tbs. oil, divided
½ tsp salt, divided
1 tsp ground black pepper, divided
1 ½ tsp. Italian seasoning, divided
¼ tsp red bell pepper flakes
2 cloves of garlic, minced, divided
4 small russet or Idaho baking potatoes, thinly sliced (peeling optional)
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 large tomatoes, thinly sliced
1 cup of chicken stock or broth or more as needed

Place chicken, 1 Tbs. oil, ¼ tsp. salt, ½ tsp. pepper, ½ tsp. Italian seasoning, the red pepper flakes and half of the garlic in a sturdy zipper lock plastic storage bag. Let chicken marinate for about an hour or so.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Use the remaining oil to grease a baking pan that will fit inside your toaster oven (approximately 8” x 10”) if using or up to a 9” x 12” pan if using the regular oven. Layer the potato slices then the onions then the tomatoes. Add the cup of stock. Scatter the remaining salt, pepper, Italian seasoning and garlic evenly over the vegetable layers. Cover with aluminum foil and bake until the potatoes are beginning to soften. Remove from oven, remove foil but do not discard. Place the marinated chicken thighs on top of the vegetable mixture. Pour marinade mixture evenly over chicken pieces. Return to oven and bake until the chicken and vegetables are cooked through. Add more stock if needed if dish begins to dry out or cover with foil if needed.

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