Fork-tender chicken with lemon and green olives

Here's something I've been working out lately. A scrumptious melt-in-your-mouth chicken recipe. Crockpot is strongly (and highly) recommended.

16 chicken thighs, bones & skin removed
1 lemon, zest & juice thereof
1/4 cup lemon juice
1/2 cup (or more) green olives, pitted and halved
1 cinnamon stick
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 inch ginger, peeled and chopped
1 cup chicken broth
olive oil
2 T turmeric
1/2 t red pepper flakes
2 T flour

One great thing about crockpot cooking is there's plenty of time for the mise en place (i.e. getting ready in advance). Here's how I prep the night before:
  • in 1 container, store olives, lemon zest and cinnamon stick
  • in another, store onions, garlic and ginger
  • in a 3rd, marinate chicken in the lemon juice (juice of 1 lemon plus extra juice)

Then, in the morning:
  1. Heat olive oil in a large pan. Dump in chicken and arrange so it's in a single layer (do more than 1 batch if you have too much chicken). Sprinkle on 1T turmeric plus the red pepper and flour.
  2. When chicken is starting to brown on 1 side, turn it over. Sprinkle on other 1 T turmeric. (Feel free to go crazy with lots more turmeric. It helps prevent cancer!)
  3. When chicken no longer looks very raw on the outside, transfer to crockpot. Do NOT clean pan yet!
  4. Add olive-zest-cinnamon to crockpot. Spread around.
  5. If needed, heat a bit more olive oil in pan. Put in onion-garlic-ginger mixture and saute for about 5 minutes. Then, pour in chicken broth and stir around to scrape up any tasty bits sticking to the bottom. Pour all into crockpot.
  6. Cook 8-10 hours or more. I sometimes start on Low and stir halfway through, then turn up to high to really tenderize the chicken. Or you can just leave it on high (or low) the whole time.

Serve with couscous and a veggie. Serves 4 with minimal leftovers.

For radio listeners, here's the Beef Jerky Time playlist from last week!
  • The Bed's Too Big Without You: The Police
  • This Will Be Our Year: OK Go
  • Isaac: Madonna
  • I Was Dancing in the Lesbian Bar: Jonathan Richman
  • Quedate Luna: Devendra Banhart
  • Waves & Echoes: Portal
  • Four Winds: Bright Eyes
  • Bongo Bong: Manu Chao
  • Mushaboom: Feist
  • Mary Is Alone: Dry Ice
  • Let's Make Love and Listen to Death from Above: Cansei de Ser Sexy
  • Rich Girl: Gwen Stefani feat. Eve
  • Sycamore: Bill Callahan
  • Quiet Town: Josh Rouse
  • Ezy Ryder: Jimi Hendrix

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