Tuesday, May 21, 2013

roasted lemon and thyme chicken

My favourite herb has got to be thyme. I used to love rosemary, but I am so over rosemary. (I can see the LAM rolling his eyes as he reads this). I think it has something to do with getting a big sniff of rosemary when I was pregnant with JL. For some bizarre reason, I cannot abide the smell of rosemary after that incident.

But thyme, how I adore thyme. I would chuck thyme into every dish I cook if I could!!

I had 4 pieces of chicken breast sitting in my fridge this morning. I was going use them to make dinner but did not feel like chicken at the last minute, so there they were, still sitting in the fridge. Since I HAD to do something with them before they had to be thrown out, I decided to roast them.

Of course, I had to use thyme. And thyme's best friend has to be lemon. What luck, I had some lemons in my fridge too!

Normally, I would use coarsely grounded black pepper to season the chicken, but I was in a fanciful mood, and decided to ground some mixed peppercorns instead.

The LAM bought me a coffee grinder to grind my spices. He looked all over the place before finally finding one (how sweet, right? :) ). I love playing with the spice grinder. The smell of freshly ground spices is heady and delicious!

Naturally, not everyone is as mental as I am and own a spice grinder. If you do not have one (very likely), use whatever ground pepper you can find.

I stripped the thyme leaves from the stalks.

Since I do not like wastage, I used the entire bunch of thyme. Besides, one simply cannot use too much thyme! I also sliced the lemons and removed the seeds.

I suppose I could have grated the lemon zest and use that as well, but I was in a bit of a hurry so I did not bother to do so.

The chicken breasts were laid on a roasting tray and quite liberally seasoned with salt and pepper on both sides.

I then scattered the thyme on the chicken (also on both sides) and squeezed the lemon juice onto the chicken before drizzling extra virgin olive oil quite liberally as well.

A few lemon pieces were placed on the chicken and the chicken pieces were then roasted for about 40 minutes, until they were brown.

You can either eat the chicken as part of a meal, or chop or slice them into smaller pieces for sandwiches, to use as pizza-toppings, or toss them into a pasta.

Quick, easy, delicious, versatile and cheap. What more can you possibly ask for?

Roast Chicken Breast with Lemon and Thyme

4 pieces chicken breast, skin removed
2 lemons, sliced
1 bunch fresh thyme (or 2 tbs dried thyme), leaves stripped.
1 tsp freshly ground mixed pepper (or black pepper)
1 tsp salt (or more to taste), preferably sea salt
Extra virgin olive oil

1. Place chicken on a roasting tray.
2. Season with salt and pepper on both sides.
3. Scatter thyme leaves on both sides.
4. Squeeze juice of lemon over chicken.
5. Drizzle with olive oil.
6. Place a few pieces of lemon on chicken.
7. Roast at 180C for about 40 minutes, or until chicken turns brown.

*Chicken can be stored in fridge for up to 3 days, or kept in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Totally Tasty Tuesdays

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