Roasted Chicken Thighs With Preserved Lemon and Olives 2.000

Renee Comet for The Washington Post

One Pan May 4, 2017

The next time you'd like to elevate a simple weeknight meal of chicken, this is the one to try. The subdued bite and firm texture of preserved lemon and Castelvetrano olives enrich the pan sauce.

A so-called rich chicken stock is one whose flavor has been concentrated either by reducing the liquid over intense heat (best to do when the stock or broth is unsalted) or one that has been made with deeply roasted bones and vegetables.

Where to Buy: Preserved lemon is available in jars at Whole Foods Markets as well as Mediterranean markets; it's also easy to make your own (see related recipe).


When you scale a recipe, keep in mind that cooking times and temperatures, pan sizes and seasonings may be affected, so adjust accordingly. Also, amounts listed in the directions will not reflect the changes made to ingredient amounts.

Tested size: 2 servings

  • 4 boneless, skin-on chicken thighs
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1 clove garlic, crushed
  • 1 sprig each fresh thyme, rosemary and sage
  • 3/4 cup chicken broth, preferably rich (see headnote)
  • Rind of 1/4 preserved lemon, rinsed and cut into very thin strips (julienne; see headnote)
  • 6 to 10 pitted Castelvetrano olives, cut into halves or quarters
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

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Preheat the oven to 425 degrees.

Season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper all over.

Heat the oil in a medium, ovenproof skillet over medium heat. Once the oil shimmers, add the chicken thighs, skin sides down. Cook just long enough so the skin is crisped and lightly browned at the edges. Use tongs to turn the thighs skin sides up, then transfer the pan to the oven. Roast for 5 to 7 minutes, just until cooked through (registering an internal temperature of 165 degrees on an instant-read thermometer).

Transfer the pan back to the stove top (medium heat). Pour in the wine to deglaze the pan, using a spatula to move the chicken around and dislodge any browned bits, then toss in the crushed garlic clove and herb sprigs. Stir in the broth, making sure the level of liquid stays below the crisped chicken skin; cook for a few minutes until the liquid has reduced by half. Discard the garlic and herbs.

Stir in the julienne of preserved lemon and the olives (to taste). Reduce the heat to medium-low; stir in the butter, as needed, until the liquid turns into a silky sauce. Taste, and adjust the salt and/or pepper, as needed. Serve hot.

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Recipe Source

From chef Aaron Wright, with the Fabio Trabocchi Restaurants group.

Tested by Bonnie S. Benwick.

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