Crispy Chicken Thighs with Lemon, Thyme and Zucchini


This recipe starts in a cold, heavy pan, which produces amazingly crispy skin and a lovely pan sauce infused with lemon and thyme. Use the best quality chicken you can find with no water added. If you do not have a cast iron skillet, any heavy ovenproof skillet will do. Serve with egg noodles or rice to absorb some of the delicious juices. Adapted from
4 chicken thighs, bone-in and skin-on, approximately 8 ounces each
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 lemon, sliced thin
8 fresh thyme sprigs
1 medium zucchini
1 Preheat your oven to 400° F. Drizzle the chicken thighs with olive oil and season them well with salt and pepper.

2 Place the thighs in a large, cold cast iron skillet, skin-side down. Place the skillet on a burner over medium heat. Let them cook, undisturbed, for 14 to 15 minutes.

3 Meanwhile, cut zucchini in half crosswise, then cut each half into 4 quarters, so you end up with 8 spears.

4 When the skin is crispy and brown, turn crispy side up. Tuck zucchini spears around the chicken, then tuck lemon slices and thyme sprigs all around. Place pan in the oven, and cook for 13 to 15 minutes, until they reach an internal temperature of 165° F.

5 Serve immediately, drizzling each portion with some of the flavorful pan juices.

servings  use metric
original recipe yield: 4 Servings
Notes Depending on the size of your cast iron skillet, you might want to brown the chicken in batches so as not to crowd the pan. If you do this, reduce the time on the second batch, as the pan will already be hot. Then you can transfer the thighs to a baking dish to finish in the oven.
We cooked one variation with garlic and onions and found they get in the way of the more subtle palette of using only these ingredients.

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