Even though I have compiled 12 pages (and counting) of recipes to cook with, choosing what to cook is still quite challenging. With each new recipe that is not part of my 10-dish repertoire, I had had to buy a new jar of spice, sauce, beans and/or what have you.
I chose this recipe because I needed to use up the leftover lemons in my fridge. The Italian-marinade chicken thighs recipe from the Good Housekeeping’s Easy-to-make cookbook series is perfect because it is very simple and requires only 4 marinade ingredients, one of which is lemon.
The original recipe calls for olive oil as one of the marinade ingredients. Olive oil, especially extra-virgin olive oil is well known for its heart health protecting properties, but it is not suitable for baking and high-heat cooking. The online article, ‘The Good Oil on Cooking Oils’ from the ABC TV (Australia) website has covered the topic quite well. So, I am not going to rehash its main points here. I usually reserve my extra-virgin olive oil for salads and use peanut, canola or regular olive oil for my daily cooking.
Back to the Italian chickens, the result did not disappoint. However, being chicken thighs, the chicken pieces were quite oily. I skimmed and discarded the fat rendered from the chicken thighs at the end of the baking time. I used skin-on chicken thighs for moist and succulent meat. If you are concerned about excessive fat intake, discard the skin before serving.
Note: Read ‘The Good Oil on Cooking Oils’ at http://www.abc.net.au/health/thepulse/stories/2012/04/24/3471676.htm
Easy Italian Chicken Bake
Adapted from a recipe in ‘Easy to make! – Favourite Family Meals’ by Good Housekeeping (2008)
4 skin-on bone-in chicken thighs
Juice of 1 large lemon
2 garlic cloves, crushed
4 tbsp canola oil
1 tsp dried oregano
¼ tsp iodised salt
Combine the marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Trim excess fat from the chicken thighs. Add the chicken to the marinade ingredients. Mix well. Marinate for 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 200°C/~400°F. Place the chicken thighs skin down on a tray. Bake for 10 minutes. Turn the chicken. Bake for another 15 minutes or until the skin turns golden brown. Serve with potatoes/rice and vegetable side dishes.