Have we discussed Yasmin Fahr before? We have. Okay, well, suffice it to say I’m a big fan of the recipes she develops, though I was skeptical of this one. First, I didn’t think that a pilaf with cooked meat would come together in less than 40 minutes of active cooking. I was wrong. Second, I was worried that the artichokes would taste funny among the otherwise bland rice and chicken. Again, wrong.
Third, I thought that the feta would make things messy. The jury is still out there as this was the item I forgot at the store this week. There’s usually one. I’m okay with feta being the forgotten one. It’s usually a bigger problem when I forget milk or yogurt, staples of The Kid’s diet.
WHAT WORKED: This was a really easy thing to pull together. It’s not the quickest dinner I’ll make this week, but even with all of my ingredient prep, I was still under one hour from start to table.
WHAT DIDN’T: Me and the feta.
WHAT DID THE WIFE SAY: “I didn’t think rice pilaf was Greek. It’s good though.”
WILL IT MAKE ANOTHER APPEARANCE: Yes, though I may drop the chicken, cut this in half and make it a side for future purposes.
Greek-Style Pilaf with Chicken Thighs
Adapted from the original by Yasmin Fahr for Serious Eats
- 1 lb. boneless, skinless chicken thighs (JARED’S NOTE: Fahr calls for skin-on. Truth be told, the bone-in, skin-on thighs were disgusting at the store. It was like a package had broken and leaked chicken juice all over the place.)
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tsp. dried oregano leaves (JARED’S NOTE: Use 2 tbsp. of fresh, if in season.)
- 2 tbsp. canola oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 cups basmati rice
- 2 3/4 cups chicken stock
- 1 15 oz. can artichoke hearts, drained, rinsed and cut into chunks (JARED’S NOTE: I got lazy. I drained the brine and used a knife to chop up the artichokes in the can.)
- 2 tbsp. fresh juice and 2 teaspoons zest from 1 lemon
- 3 oz. crumbled feta cheese
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven until it shimmers and smokes slightly. Season both sides of the chicken with salt, pepper and half of the oregano. Place the thighs in a pan, skin-side down, and cook 8 to 10 minutes, until browned. Flip over and cook an additional 4 minutes. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Add the onion and a pinch of salt. Cook 3 to 5 minutes, or until the onion is soft. Add the garlic and the remainder of the oregano. Cook until the garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add the rice, stirring constantly until it gives off a nutty aroma and begins to toast. Stir in the stock, artichokes, and lemon zest and juice. Set the chicken thighs on top, skin-side up this time, and cover. Simmer 15 minutes.
Uncover, top with the feta cheese and serve immediately.