Crispy and Sticky Chicken Thighs with Squashed New Potatoes and Tomatoes
- 1 3/4 pounds new potatoes, scrubbed
- 12 boned chicken thighs, skin on, preferably free-range or organic
- Olive oil
- Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 1/4 pounds cherry tomatoes, different shapes and colors if you can find them
- 1 bunch fresh oregano, leaves picked
- Extra-virgin olive oil
- Red wine vinegar
This is a simple pan-baked chicken dish - the sort of food I absolutely love to eat. As everything cooks together in 1 dish, all the beautiful flavors get mixed up. This is what it's all about! With a green salad, it's an easy dinner.
Put the potatoes into a large saucepan of salted boiling water and boil until cooked.
While the potatoes are cooking, preheat your oven to 400 degrees F. Cut each chicken thigh into 3 strips and place in a bowl. Rub the meat all over with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper, then toss.
Heat a large frying pan, big enough to hold all the chicken pieces snugly in 1 layer, and put the chicken into the pan, skin side down. If you don't have a pan that's big enough, feel free to cook the chicken in 2 batches. Toss and fry over a high heat for 10 minutes or so, until almost cooked, then remove with a slotted spoon to an ovenproof pan or dish.
Prick the tomatoes with a sharp knife. Place them in a bowl, cover with boiling water and leave for a minute or so. Drain and, when cool enough to handle, pinch off their skins. You don't have to, but by doing this they will become lovely and sweet when cooked, and their intense flavor will infuse the potatoes. By now the potatoes will be cooked. Drain them in a colander and lightly crush them by pushing down on them with your thumb.
Bash up most of the oregano leaves with a pinch of salt in a pestle and mortar, or a Flavor Shaker if you have one. Add 4 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil, a good splash of red wine vinegar and some pepper and give everything another bash. Add to the chicken with the potatoes, the tomatoes and the rest of the oregano leaves. Toss everything together carefully. Spread out in a single layer in an appropriately sized roasting pan, and bake for 40 minutes in the preheated oven until golden.
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