This is my favorite weeknight chicken recipe. I've made this for years without a recipe, but the last time I made it I finally took the time to scribble down what I put in it, and take a few pictures for you. It's so easy, once you've made it you don't really need a recipe.
The quantities are just a guideline - it really doesn't matter how much of each thing you add. It's all good.
- 3-4 pounds chicken thighs (you can use other pieces as well, but thighs are my favorite)
- 1/2 cup white wine (and a little extra for the cook)
- 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (and the squeezed lemon halves)
- 1 teaspoon salt, and a little more to sprinkle on top
- a heaping tablespoon dijon mustard
- 1 teaspoon (or more) crushed or chopped garlic
- fresh round pepper, to taste
Preheat oven to 400.
Put chicken pieces in zip top plastic bag. Add all the rest of the ingredients. Don't for get to add the pieces of lemon that you squeezed, they add great flavor. Close the bag securely and just massage it all around so it's well mixed and the chicken is well coated. If you have time, let this sit for an hour or more. If not, that's fine too. When you are ready to cook, just dump it all in a casserole dish or other oven safe pan. I like to sprinkle a little more salt on top, because I love that salty, crispy skin.
Cook for 35-45 minutes - depending on how hot your oven is (mine runs a little cold) - until all the juice looks clear and cooked (no red or pink juices from the chicken), and the skin is nicely browned. The nice thing about thighs is that it's harder to overcook them, you have to really overcook them in order for them to not be good. Also cooking with all this marinade helps too, it really keeps them juicy. If you decide to do this with white meat you will need to watch it more closely.
I like to serve this with some white rice or plain pasta on the side. The juices from the chicken, combined with the lemon juice, wine, and mustard, make the most amazing and delicious sauce, so you really don't need to do anything else. Steam a veggie or make a quick salad, and you have a super easy weeknight dinner.
After you're done - don't throw out those bones! Take the meat off the bones and save, and dump everything else that's left into a pot, cover with water, and simmer for a couple hours until you have broth. It's the most amazing lemony flavored broth and it is perfect for making soup.