Sometimes fridge clean-out meals are just that: a mishmash of leftovers that get the job done while reducing food waste. Every once in a while, they go beyond that, inspiring creativity. This one-pan recipe came about on a recent evening as I stared down the contents of my fridge trying to figure out what to do next.
In my crisper were a leek, a couple lemons, a small bundle of thyme, and a few stalks of celery that had seen better days. (Not exactly an overflowing bounty, but a solid start.) After some rummaging in my freezer produced a few chicken thighs, the beginnings of a meal began to swirl around in my head.
I thinly sliced the vegetables, whisked together some olive oil, mustard, salt, pepper, and thyme, and got to cooking. And let me tell you, the results were pretty darn great. With a little tweaking — I added carrots for sweetness and color and started the vegetables off in the pan first so they had more time to soften — I had a weeknight meal worthy of sharing here. It may not be the most beautiful dish that's come out of my kitchen (grainy mustard, while one of my favorite condiments, is no looker once baked), but it is full of flavor, hearty, and low-fuss, making it an ideal midweek option.
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 2 tablespoons grainy dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon minced thyme
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large or two small leeks, sliced 1/2 inch thick, cleaned
- 4 stalks celery, sliced 1/2 inch thick
- 4 medium carrots, peeled, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 4 boneless skinless chicken thighs
- Juice of 1/2 a lemon
- Preheat the oven to 425°F.
- Whisk together the olive oil, mustard, thyme, salt, and pepper in a small bowl.
- Toss together the leek, celery, carrots, and a bit less than half of the mustard mixture in an 8-inch-square baking dish. Roast for 25 minutes, stirring once to promote even cooking.
- Meanwhile, rub both sides of the chicken thighs with the remaining mustard mixture.
- Take the vegetables out of the oven and nestle the thighs on top of the vegetables. Cook for 20-25 minutes or until the chicken's juices run clear. Squeeze the lemon over the chicken and serve.
- Main Dishes, Game
- North American
- Serves 2