You have probably noticed I am a huge fan of the chicken thigh. It is way more succulent and juicy than the breast, is easier to eat than tackling the bones of a leg or a wing and in my opinion, has a lot more flavour. They are the perfect vehicle for tasty marinades and rubs and can be cooked rather quickly in a pan or left to slow cook and simmer in a curry or stew. This recipe is the prime example of thigh versatility. Marinated in fresh oregano, lemon, garlic and a hint of honey they were a gorgeous topper for a salad of spiced, roasted cauliflower and nutty quinoa, freshened up with a few baby spinach leaves. To top off the topper a delicious dollop of roasted garlic infused greek yoghurt. Winner, winner, thigh dinner!!
Ps. This dish looks like a lot of steps but it is actually very simple. You will just have oven and cook top on the go at the same time. It is definitely a great one to bribe one of the kids to be the kitchen hand and help out with the dishes if you are a messy cook!
Prep time: 30 Minutes Cooking time: 40 Minutes $$ Medium Budget
8 Chicken thigh fillets, trimmed of excess fat and lightly beaten with a rolling pin
Grated rind and juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
10 sprigs of fresh oregano, leaves removed from stalks and stalks discarded
2 cloves of garlic, sliced
2 tsp of honey
Sea salt and cracked pepper
For the Salad:
1/2 a small cauliflower, roughly chopped into bite sized pieces
Grated rind and juice of 1/2 a lemon
1 tsp of chilli flakes
1 tsp of dried oregano
2 tbs of extra virgin olive oil
1 cup of quinoa
11/2 cups of water
1 bag of baby spinach leaves
2 tbs of chopped fresh parsley
Sea salt and pepper
For the yoghurt:
1 bulb of garlic
1 cup of greek yoghurt
1 tsp of honey
A squeeze of lemon
Sea salt and pepper
Pre heat the oven to 180°C. Place the garlic in a piece of foil and wrap loosely but so no steam escapes. Place on a small tray and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and allow to cool.
Cover another tray with baking paper and place the cauliflower on top. Drizzle with olive oil and scatter over the lemon rind, chilli flakes, oregano and season well with salt and pepper. Toss well to coat and place in the oven for 20-25 minutes until golden and tender.
Place the lemon rind, garlic, fresh oregano and salt in a mortar and pestle or blender. Pound or blitz until you have a rough paste and then stir through the olive oil and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper and pour the marinade in a shallow dish. Add the thigh fillets and rub the marinade all over the thigh fillets. Set aside for 10-15 minutes.
Place the quinoa in a saucepan with the water and season with a little salt. Bring to the boil and then reduce the heat to a simmer. Cover and cook for 12 minutes before turning off the heat and allowing to rest for 5 minutes.
Heat a griddle pan or BBQ grill to a nice high heat and cook the thigh fillets on each side for 6 minutes. Remove the cauliflower from the oven and place in a large bowl and transfer the chicken to the same tray. Pop in the oven for 5 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through.
To prepare the salad toss the cauliflower, quinoa and baby spinach leaves and half the chopped parsley together and drizzle with olive oil and lemon juice. Set aside.
Squeeze the roasted garlic from its skin into a small bowl (it should come out easily). Add a pinch of salt and mash with the back of a fork until you have a fine paste. Add the yoghurt, lemon and honey and stir well to combine.
To assemble the dish, divide the salad between four plates and top each salad with two thigh fillets. Spoon over the garlicky yoghurt and top with a smattering of chopped parsley and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.