Za’atar Chicken over Yogurt

Looking for a meal that looks beautiful and feels complex, but isn’t actually that hard or time-consuming to make? Got one for you! It’s a great meal to share when friends are over… though it also is best if your eaters don’t mind just digging into the shared platter and eating with their fingers. The bulk of the cooking is done in the oven, while you can be drinking your glass of wine and chatting. The za’atar oil is delicious, despite its seeming simplicity. The yogurt adds a cooling contrast.

Za’atar Chicken over Yogurt

(Minimally adapted from Bon Appetit magazine)
  • ~2lb bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt & pepper
  • 2 heads of garlic, halved + 4 cloves, minced
  • 2 medium onions, sliced into wedges
  • 1 lemon, zested & quartered
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 cup of Greek style yogurt
  • 3 tbsp za’atar
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Pat the chicken dry and season both sides with salt & pepper.
  2. In a glass baking dish, place the chicken, halved garlic heads, onions, and lemons. Pour oil over top and toss to coat. Arrange the pieces so the garlic is cut side down and spread out as well as it can be.
  3. Bake, rotating the pan once halfway through, for a total of an hour.
  4. Meanwhile, add 2 of the minced garlic cloves to the yogurt, along with a pinch of salt and 1 tbsp of water. Stir to combine and then refrigerate while the rest of the meal is cooking.
  5. In another bowl, combine the remaining spices and lemon zest.
  6. When the hour is up, remove the baking dish from the oven and remove everything except the chicken and juices to the side.
  7. Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees and roast the chicken for another 10-15 minutes until browned and crisping.
  8. Spread the yogurt out a large serving platter. Place the chicken, garlic, onions, and lemons on top of the yogurt.
  9. Pour the pan juice into the bowl with the spices, whisking to create a spiced oil. Drizzle this oil on top of everything on the platter.
Serves 4

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