The allium family (including garlic, onions, leeks, shallots, and chives) is well known to even the most basic chef. After all, what pantry is complete without onions and garlic? But these tasty plants are also nutrition powerhouses, packed with antioxidants that have shown potential in the fight against cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
This week’s recipe uses red onions in a delicious baked chicken recipe, and was sent to CCSA as part of a series of emails from our resident chef, Dr. Linda Doody. She has been sharing her extensive collection of favorite recipes with friends, family, and the CCSA team as a means of maintaining connections during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Cooking is at once child’s play and adult joy. And cooking done with care is an act of love.”
– Craig Claiborne
Chicken Baked with Sweet Potato, Smoked Paprika and Preserved Lemon
Pure Simple Cooking, Diana Henry (2007)
- 2 red onions, each cut into 10 wedges
- 2 pounds sweet potatoes peeled and cut into large chunks
- 5 crushed peeled garlic cloves
- Salt and pepper
- ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 Tbsp pimenton (smoked Spanish paprika)
- ½ preserved lemon flesh, finely sliced or chopped (see preserved lemon recipes below. You can also use fresh Meyer lemons, and chop the flesh and rind together)
- 2 Tbsp juice from preserved lemon jar (or fresh Meyer lemon juice)
- 1 (4-pound) roasting chicken cut into 8 pieces, or 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs, rubbed with sea salt to crisp skin
- Handful of pitted black or Kalamata olives
- Zest of preserved (or Meyer) lemon
- Chopped parsley
- Chopped cilantro
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Mix chicken with oil, garlic, preserved lemon and juice, and pimenton. Put into a large roasting pan and add sweet potatoes/yams and red onion. (Note: I use a large rimmed baking sheet rather than a roasting pan.) Toss and season with salt and pepper. Bake for 45 minutes, until cooked through, adding olives and shredded lemon zest (see note above) 15 minutes before the end. Transfer everything to a large platter, or bring to the table in the roasting pan. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and cilantro.
- Quick Preserved Lemon
- Bon Appetit (September 2010)
- 1 large lemon, cut crosswise into ¼ inch thick rounds
- ½ cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 Tbsp coarse salt
- Combine all ingredients in small skillet. Bring to boil over high heat, stirring to dissolve salt. Cover; reduce heat to low. Simmer until lemon slices are almost tender (peel will look translucent), about 10 minutes. Cool; chill. Store in refrigerator for up to 1 week.
- Traditional Preserved Lemon
- Couscous and Other Good Food from Morocco, Paula Wolfert (1973)
- 5 lemons
- ¼ cup salt
- Quarter the lemons from top to within ½ inch of the bottom. Sprinkle salt on the exposed flesh, then reshape the fruit. Place 1 Tbsp salt in the bottom of a sterilized pint mason jar. Pack in lemons, pressing down to release juice, and adding more salt between each. If not enough juice is released, add freshly squeezed juice. Leave some air space before sealing. Let lemons ripen in a warm place, turning the jar upside down each day to distribute salt and juice. Let ripen 30 days.
- To use, rinse the lemons as needed under running water, removing and discarding pulp if desired. No need to refrigerate. Can be stored up to one year, and pickling juice can be re-used two or three times during that period.