living in a dream: greek lemon chicken

greek baked chicken

It’s so funny that I’ve waited so long to post this recipe because it’s a really, really good one. I made this in early fall when I could still put things outside on the balcony to photograph. It’s not that I forgot about this tasty chicken meal, but it’s because I took a photo of this meal in my well-worn Jadite dish. Let me explain. I love this dish. It treats me well and I think I do well by it too. But it is by no means a pretty dish – well, not after I’m through with it. Sure, it’s got a lovely vintage green hue…but it stains easily and it’s near impossible to scrub away all of splatters. No matter how hard I scrub it with my miracle baking soda-vinegar-soap concoction it won’t become pristine (however, my miracle mix does work wonders on bathtubs and cleans grimy ovens like nobody’s business). What I wouldn’t give for a dishwasher! And a window in the kitchen! And more cupboard and counter space! Actually, I’ve got a whole list of wants & you can see them all & follow me on Pinterest because I’m sort of addicted.

But I’m snapping out of my perfect dream world because I made this dish last week with every intention to take another photo. But then dinner was running late, we were starving, and when it came right down to things, we just chomped down. There was no waiting to take photos because this is a chicken dish you just want to inhale. New photos be damned! We dug in and licked our fingers. Happiness achieved.

greek lemon garlic oregano chicken

There is a bit of prep time because the chicken should marinate for a couple hours so that the chicken gets a lemony soak, but other than a bit of advance planning, the rest is a snap. The first time I made this, I threw caution to the wind and left the skin on. But it’s January now and I’m much more sensible, so I pulled that skin right off before marinating it. Chicken skin, I understand the lure, but either way, it’s delicious. Your call.

elsewhere: Need a bowl of gluten-free comfort? Try my coconut and lime rice pudding over at Poppytalk this week. It’s a no-fuss way to near instant happiness. And it’s vegan to boot!

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36 comments to “living in a dream: greek lemon chicken”

  1. 1
    Heidi @ homeingreece   January 27, 2012 at 3:12 am

    This looks really yummy! I think my Greek mother-in-law would approve! :)

  2. 2
    Joanne   January 27, 2012 at 3:31 am

    I really like the first photo! It looks quite rustic in an eat-me-now kind of way!

  3. 3
    Tracy   January 27, 2012 at 6:40 am

    I know the feeling well. Photos be damned. Just chomp down!

  4. 4
    Molly   January 27, 2012 at 6:45 am

    I must admit the first thing I thought when I saw a new post was, “oh what a lovely dish,” followed by, “oh, I see there’s some chicken in it.” I’m always impressed by people who are able to photograph their dishes before digging in. We’re always about halfway through a scrumptious dinner when I say, “oops, I should have snapped a photo of this.”

    This recipe sounds like one of those dishes that the sum is greater than its parts.

  5. 5
    Tommy   January 27, 2012 at 7:06 am

    Oh wow. I love simple recipes like these … that are also so, so good. And the chicken is baked! Awesome. I bet these would be great on the grill too. Which I would do … if it wasn’t January. Great stuff.

  6. 6
    vanillasugarblog   January 27, 2012 at 7:41 am

    ha ha. i have one of those pans too, and it’s impossible to clean, but i love it.
    i bet this chicken smelled DEEEEvine while baking away

  7. 7
    Amanda @ Once Upon a Recipe   January 27, 2012 at 8:54 am

    These photos look lovely to me! And so does this recipe! Chicken thighs are being added to my grocery list for next week. I’ve already got everything else! Have a great weekend!

  8. 8
    kickpleat   January 27, 2012 at 10:54 am

    Heidi, I hope so!! I”m not sure it’s traditionally Greek….but definitely Greek inspired :)

    Aw thanks Joanne for calming my dish paranoia!

    Indeed, thanks Tracy!

    Ha!! Thanks Molly. I’m so bad with taking photos – I have so many great dinners I’ve forgotten to photograph over the years. But I think it’s okay to just enjoy food for enjoyment sake. Photos be damned!

    If I had a grill & it was warm out, Tommy, I’m sure this would be great on it! Great idea.

    Vanillasugar, it did smell amazing. Glad I’m not alone in the pan scrubbery club!

    Amanda, I hope you give this a go, it’s a great dish.

  9. 9
    SixBalloons   January 27, 2012 at 10:58 am

    Hey kickpleat, question – do you ever buy the chicken thighs at the Sunrise Market in Strathcona? I usually just go with the veg there, but wondering about the meat counter since it’s in your hood and you seem to love cooking with c-thighs as much as I do.

  10. 10
    Joanne (Bijoux)   January 27, 2012 at 1:31 pm

    I think I may have the perfect product for you to scrub that Jadite dish of yours. It’s the best scrub cloth ever! And it’s made in Poland to boot. I think they know something about pot scrubbing after all, they make mounds and mounds of perogies and cabbage dishes over there LOL! I will send it your way :)

    Skin off or skin on, these chicken thighs sound yummy. The marinating part is where I usually go astray since I never think ahead to incorporate that process. Next time try drizzling some olive oil on the chicken before baking. Greeks oil their meat before grilling/roasting/baking. Not sure why but I think it seals in the juices. Works for me every time.

  11. 11
    Kirby Larson   January 28, 2012 at 10:24 am

    I made this last night but wasn’t sure what to do with the two lemons so I juiced and zested them. Was that right? It was very lemony, which I love, but wasn’t sure if I did it right.

    And I love that wonderful pan — have you ever tried Bon Ami? “Hasn’t scratched yet”!

  12. 12
    kickpleat   January 28, 2012 at 8:06 pm

    SixBalloons, I have bought chicken from Sunrise in the past and it’s been perfectly fine. They don’t carry organic meats so I’m only buying legs & thighs elsewhere since they’re cheaper than white meat to buy organic.

    Joanne, I’m keen, I’m keen!!! I so need a powerful dish rag, so we’ll see how it does. Thank you so much! As for the chicken, I’m curious about the olive oil over top. May have to try it next time, though I’m always worried about adding in extra fats.

    Kirby, yes, it’s very lemony chicken….but I do love the lemon here. Yes, juiced & zested is the correct thing to do. I didn’t zest my lemons, but I think it should be fine regardless. As for Bon Ami, I’ve never seen it – maybe it’s not available in Canada? I’ll keep my eye out for it (I love the packaging!). Thanks!

  13. 13
    Kate   January 28, 2012 at 11:14 pm

    You don’t have a kitchen window? Or a dishwasher? You do an AMAZING job with presentation and photography on your site. I will immediately quit grovelling about the bad light in my kitchen window and my ugly counter tops.

    That is a beautiful Jadite dish, and the chicken looks very tasty. Thanks for another great recipe!

  14. 14
    Clare   January 29, 2012 at 11:10 am

    Haha, I know what you mean about having all the intentions in the world about taking photos and then just digging in! Recipe looks lovely, and I do love that green dish!

  15. 15
    Lucy @ Lucyeats   January 29, 2012 at 5:04 pm

    What a lovely, simple dish -the colour on the chicken looks amazing! Haha, I can tell my boyfriend gets a bit antsy when I make him wait while I take pictures of all the food!

  16. 16
    ileana   January 30, 2012 at 5:32 am

    Whoa! This is making me so hungry.

  17. 17
    SixBalloons   January 30, 2012 at 9:38 am

    Good call, thanks for the response. Sure is tempting at $2.29 a pound. I tried some of the Sunrise chicken thighs for a thai green curry dish with napa cabbage and spinach and it turned out delish. And cheap.

  18. 18
    kickpleat   January 30, 2012 at 12:34 pm

    Aw thanks Kate! As for ugly countertops, that’s what pretty tea towels are for!

    Thank you Clare! Sometimes it’s hard to resist, food blogging be damned!!

    Lucy, haha, I know the feeling well.

    Thanks Ileana.

    SixBalloons, there’s a restaurant line at Sunrise & it gets used all the time. I’ve seen cooks from fancy restos shopping there, so I have no issues with their quality at all. It is cheap, but I’m starting to worry about why meat is so cheap so I’m buying almost all of my fish/meat as either organic/local.

  19. 19
    Genie   January 30, 2012 at 4:22 pm

    I love your roasting dish! I think the freckles and the use give it great character. Like you, I love rice with roast chicken. Rice soaks up sauce so beautifully. Perhaps you could give the chicken a lemony soak in the morning before work and by the time you come home, it’s all ready just to bung in the oven, cook rice and vegetables and eat. I love blogging in the summer because it’s still light by the time we eat dinner which makes for better photos. I have yet to master the night time dinner shot and flash is generally horrid.

  20. 20
    Jan   January 31, 2012 at 4:22 am

    I made this last night and it was de-lish! It’s going into the rotation.

  21. 21
    Robert F   February 5, 2012 at 10:59 pm

    How simple, tasty, and lush! Wearing her headphones and watching Downton Abbey, Judy says “Delicious.” Incidentally, without skin, each thigh is about 110 calories, which is hard to believe for something that tastes this good. Maybe I should eat seven of them.

  22. 22
    kickpleat   February 6, 2012 at 5:21 pm

    Genie, can I tell you how much I LOVE it that you’re calling my pan spots freckles??!! I do love it a lot and thank you.

    So glad to hear you enjoyed this, Jan. Thanks for sharing.

    Robert F, so glad you both enjoyed this dish. And really, 110 calories only per thigh?!!! Wowzers.

  23. 23
    Kasey   February 6, 2012 at 10:18 pm

    Sometimes, there’s just no time to be wasted taking more food photos (blasphemy!). This chicken looks spectacular!

  24. 24
    Elizabeth   February 10, 2012 at 8:42 am

    I love it when something is too good to blog — no time for photos! Besides, the blog always gets the food at its best so I’m glad you enjoyed the chicken at its peak. Also, three cheers for chicken thighs. I cannot wait to make this!

  25. 25
    John   February 13, 2012 at 8:40 am

    This looks great cant wait to make it.

  26. 26
    kickpleat   February 15, 2012 at 11:57 am

    Thanks Kasey, another food bloggers got to understand, right?

    Elizabeth, love your enthusiasm. I love chicken thighs a lot. So much flavour.

    Thanks John!

  27. 27
    Redd H from Salted Spoon   February 17, 2012 at 7:59 pm
  28. 28
    kickpleat   February 19, 2012 at 3:15 pm

    Thanks so much, Redd!

  29. 29
    Bargainmoose   February 27, 2012 at 11:23 am

    Love how simple this recipe looks, and gives me new energy to try out chicken thighs! We always stick with skinless boneless chicken breasts, as they are the easiest to work with! This looks way to easy not to try and looks AMAZING! Thanks so much for the idea :) Great Post -Kate

  30. 30
    lynn @ the actor's diet   March 3, 2012 at 7:47 am

    when i lived in astoria, queens (a greek neighborhood) i had this all the time, with lemon potatoes! miss it…

  31. 31
    kickpleat   March 6, 2012 at 9:23 pm

    Thanks Bargainmoose – try it with boneless white meat, but give thighs a chance :)

    Lynn, oooh, the potatoes!! Must make some, stat.

  32. 32
    Cara   March 23, 2012 at 4:09 pm

    Ooooh, anything with lemon is definitely for me. Will try this out! Another great lemony chicken recipe calls for dried basil, lemon juice and zest and soy sauce. Sooooooo good!

  33. 33
    Bobbi   September 2, 2012 at 11:28 am

    This looks great and I want to try it, but can’t marinate for 2 hours as I would be at work, have you ever marinated this all day? Has it/would it work? Would love to know your thoughts! Thanks!!

  34. 34
    kickpleat   September 3, 2012 at 9:40 am

    Bobbi, yes, you can marinate it for a whole day. Enjoy!!

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