This dish is a take on a wonderful dinner my friend, Becky, served us a while back. Becky and her family have lived all over the world, and she has a tender place in her heart for the land and people of Persia. She also has a thing for feta cheese, as do I.
Armed with a warm memory of our visit and a partial bottle of fenugreek Becky insisted I take home with me after I gushed excessively about the dinner, I was inspired to get into the kitchen and work a little Middle Eastern flare into a batch of chicken.
This chicken definitely has Middle Eastern flare – packed with savory spices, accented with a burst of lemon, and topped with just enough creamy feta cheese. It secured an easy spot on our short list of dinner “regulars.”
If you really love feta, you can transfer the juices from the pan to a small saucepan, and add a splash of cream and some extra cheese, allowing it to melt over low heat before pouring it over the chicken. Becky’s version included something similar and it was entirely, wonderfully fabulous.
This dish could be served alone or over a bed of basmati or your favorite rice. I chose to “rice” a head of cauliflower, season it, and stir in a few frozen peas and chopped spinach. The light texture complimented the chicken nicely and got some extra vegetables on our plate at the same time! Get the Middle Eastern Cauliflower Rice Recipe here.
- 4 Tbsp pastured butter or ghee melted
- 2 pounds chicken thighs
- 4 tsp house seasoning 4:1:1 ratio of sea salt:black pepper:garlic powder
- 1 tsp fenugreek
- 2 tsp turmeric
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- 1/4 tsp cayenne
- 1 large lemon
- 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- Use a pastry brush to spread melted butter/ghee onto a large roasting pan. Brush remainder over all sides of chicken thighs.
- Mix all dry spices together in a small bowl.* Generously sprinkle mixture on tops and bottoms of thighs before placing on the roasting pan.
- Cut the lemon in half, squeeze the juice over the seasoned chicken, then place squeezed lemon halves in the pan, face up.
- Roast covered for 25 minutes, then uncovered for 15 minutes, or until a meat thermometer inserted into the center of the largest thigh reads 165 degrees.
- Remove from oven, sprinkle with feta cheese, and serve.
* Amounts of dry spices called for are enough for 1 batch of this recipe, plus 1 batch of Middle Eastern Cauliflower Rice.
Any other feta-lovers out there? What are your favorite ways to eat it?
Or leave a comment to share what you think of this Middle Eastern Lemon Feta Chicken if you try it!
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