PORTLAND, Maine — MIDEASTERN ROASTED ZA’ATAR CHICKEN (SPATCHCOCKED)
- 5 to 6 Pound Chicken
- 2 cups of plain Yogurt,
- 1-1/2 tablespoons of Salt
- 1 tablespoon Za’ atar
- 1 large clove chopped Garlic
- 2 medium Onions, peeled and chopped into one-inch chunks
- 10 to 15 Olives, preferably pitted
- 2 tablespoons chopped Sundried Tomatoes, coarsely chopped (both dried or in oil work)
- 5 large cloves Garlic
- 1/2 Teaspoon Salt
- 1 Teaspoon Za’atar
- 1-1/2 cups warm water or chicken stock
- Olive Oil
The night before you plan to cook the chicken, prepare it by starting the marinade.
Mix the yogurt, salt, za’atar, and garlic in a large bowl.
Rinse the chicken (and remove any giblets etc.) and place it in the bowl with the marinade. Make sure the marinade comes in contact with all surfaces of the chicken.
Cover or place in a large plastic bag and refrigerate overnight and until ready to bake.
One hour before cooking, remove the chicken from the refrigerator and rinse it thoroughly. Pat dry with paper towels.
Preheat the oven to 475 F.
Using kitchen shears, cut out the spine by carefully snip along both sides of the spine to remove it (you’ll be removing a strip about an inch to an inch and a half wide). Run your fingers along the edge of the cut to identify any small sections of bone and remove them.
Place the chicken breast side up and push down firmly on the center of the breast to flatten it out. (You may hear a cracking or crunching noise.)
Lightly oil the bottom of the roasting pan and evenly spread the onions, sun-dried tomato, and olives. Add the 1-1/2 cups water or stock.
Lay the spatchcocked chicken on the bed of onions/tomato/olives breast side up.
Lightly brush the exposed parts of the chicken with olive oil, and then season it with salt and za’atar. Place the garlic cloves around the chicken.
Cover with aluminum foil and roast at 475 F for about 45 minutes and then remove the foil and roast for another 45 minutes (or so), until internal temperature at the thickest spots reaches 175 degrees and the juices run clear.
Let the chicken rest, loosely covered with foil for at least 15 minutes before slicing. Delicious served with mashed or roasted potatoes, crisp green beans, spooning the onions, and pan gravy overall.
CARAMELIZED ONION AND VEGETABLE PIE
- 2 small Zucchini
- 2 medium Onions
- 1/2 red Bell Pepper
- 2 teaspoons of Olive Oil
- 4 large Eggs, beaten
- 6 oz Feta Cheese (or shredded Asiago) plus one oz for topping
- 1/4 cup of Light Cream
- 1/2 teaspoon of Salt
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed Rosemary
- Dash of dried Thyme
- Dash of Cayenne or Aleppo Pepper
Preheat oven to 350 F and spray a pie dish with cooking spray.
Coarsely chop the Zucchini, Onions and Red Pepper, and Add the Salt, Rosemary, Thyme and Pepper.
Sauté them in the olive oil until lightly browned (but still firm). Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
Mix the beaten Eggs, Cheese, and Cream in a separate bowl.
Blend the sautéed vegetables with the egg/cheese/cream mixture, and spread evenly in the pie dish. Top with a sprinkle of extra cheese.
Place in the preheated oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown.
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