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jajik chicken with za’atar potatoes

Ingredients

For the jajik chicken:
1 cup strained yogurt (i.e., Greek yogurt)
2 cloves garlic, crushed through a press or finely minced
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup chopped dill
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
6 boneless chicken thighs *
For garnish: 2 to 3 tablespoons chopped dill

For the za’atar potatoes:
1 pound russet potatoes
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 to 2 teaspoons za’atar,** to taste
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon salt, to taste

Instructions

  1. Make the jajik: Combine the yogurt, garlic, black pepper, dill, extra virgin olive oil, and 1/2 teaspoon salt (or salt to taste). Taste it and adjust the seasoning to your preference.
  2. Divide the jajik in half, and put one half in the refrigerator, away from the raw chicken.
  3. Marinate the chicken: Cover the chicken thighs with the other half of the jajik, and let them marinate for 30 minutes.
  4. Prep the potatoes while you wait: slice the potatoes into large wedges, coat them in the olive oil, place them in a skillet or sheet pan, and sprinkle them with za’atar and salt. Set aside.
  5. Preheat the oven to 425° F so that it will be hot by the time the chicken is done marinating.
  6. Roast the chicken and potatoes: Place the marinated chicken on a sheet pan or skillet, being careful not to wipe off the jajik marinade. Roast the chicken for 35 to 40 minutes, until the outside is golden brown and charred in some spots. Roast the potatoes at the same time as the chicken, taking them out after about 30 minutes, once they’re golden brown, blistered, and cooked all the way through (about 5 to 10 minutes before the chicken is done). Cooking may take longer, depending on how thick you slice them.

Notes

* You can use small chicken breasts, but you will need to cook them a shorter amount of time (25 to 35 minutes), and the exteriors won’t get quite as brown. Remove the chicken breasts as soon as their internal temperature reaches 165° F. Buy about 1 pound of chicken breast.

** If you don’t have za’atar on hand, feel free to just use 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. It’s not the same, but also delicious!