Thursday, March 12, 2015

Meyer Lemon Chicken


Crusty chicken studded with slices of bright yellow Meyer lemons and browned potatoes makes a very pretty dish and is certainly company worthy.

Meyer lemons are a cross between regular lemons and mandarin oranges. They have a sweeter, more floral taste and their skins are thinner, making them harder to transport and handle. They grow well in warm climates where it doesn’t freeze, such as southern California and south Florida.


Meyer lemons sometimes can be difficult to find, but the have have become increasingly popular so you might be surprised where you can and can't find them. It’s funny how I can almost always count on our supermarket in the mountains to have a bag of Meyer lemons. And here we are 750 miles south in southwest Florida where Meyer lemons grow locally and one day I saw them and the next day they were gone. That’s what happened to me when I decided to buy the lemons for this dish. Publix doesn’t carry them, however a nearby farm stand had lots of locally grown Meyer lemons (try saying Fort Myers Meyer lemons quickly 3 times in a row) the other day when we were there to pick up a box of local strawberries. The very next day when we went to buy the lemons, poof, they were all gone. So you never know. But don’t fear if you can’t find Meyer lemons though. Just add a pinch of sugar to regular lemon juice and you’ll replicate the flavors of a Meyer lemon.

This is the kind of dish I save for weekends when I’m not in a hurry to get dinner on the table. It’s not a quick dish to prepare and requires some active prep time. However, the flavors are well worth the extra minutes it takes.



Meyer Lemon Chicken
Adapted from Cooking Light – serves 6 – 1 breast or 1 thigh per person
Printable Recipe

2 skin-on, bone-in chicken breasts, cut in halves crosswise
2 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pound small red potatoes, quartered
1 Meyer lemon, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices, then remove seeds
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 cup low salt or unsalted chicken stock, divided
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 ounces pitted olives, we used a combination of green and kalamata
2 tablespoons fresh Meyer lemon juice
Pinch of sugar, not necessary unless you are using a regular lemon
2 tablespoons butter
Fresh parsley leaves

Preheat oven to 400°.

Add 1 tablespoon of olive oil to a large ovenproof skillet, swirl the oil around, then turn the heat to medium-high. Sprinkle chicken with salt and freshly ground black pepper on both sides.  Add chicken to pan, skin side down; cook 6 minutes or until skin is golden brown and crisp. Turn chicken over. Place pan in oven. Bake at 400° for 12 minutes or until a thermometer inserted in thickest portion of chicken registers 165°.

Remove chicken from pan; keep warm. Discard pan drippings (do not wipe pan clean). Add 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add potatoes to pan; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt. Cook potatoes on each side until done all the way through and browned. Remove potatoes from pan. Add lemon slices to pan; cook 1 minute on each side or until browned. Remove lemons from pan. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add shallots and garlic; sauté 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add wine and chopped fresh thyme; cook 1 minute or until liquid almost evaporates, scraping pan to loosen browned bits.

Return potatoes and lemon slices to pan. Add 2/3 cup chicken stock, 1/4 teaspoon salt and a few grinds of freshly ground black pepper & cook until potatoes are completely tender. Combine remaining 1/3 cup stock with cornstarch and stir with a whisk to combine. Add cornstarch mixture and olives to pan; bring to a boil. Cook 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Add a pinch of sugar to the lemon juice if you used a regular lemon, and then add the lemon juice and butter, stirring until butter melts. Return chicken to pan, turning to coat. Sprinkle with parsley and serve right away with the pan sauce.

Cook’s notes: Meyer lemons aren’t as tart as a regular lemon. If you use a regular lemon, add a nice pinch of sugar to the lemon juice to help replicate the milder Meyer lemon juice. Use small potatoes, or if all you can find is large potatoes, cut them into pieces the size of a quartered small potato. No matter what their size, be sure to cook the potatoes until they are cooked all the way through when you are browning them in the first phase because they will cook only a little bit more at the end of the recipe. Our chicken breasts were huge. If yours are very small, you might want to use three breasts. If your chicken thighs are very small, I would suggest using 4 – 6. Our thighs were fairly small compared to the breasts and one thigh made a rather small serving.


For better viewing, click photos to enlarge.

This will be shared with Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farm and Miz Helen’s Country Kitchen Full Plate Thursday.
Have a great weekend everyone.

39 comments:

  1. Fantastic and wonderfully citrusy!

    Cheers,

    Rosa

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  2. I almost bought a Meyer Lemon tree, small, the other day, but didn't. Now I think I'll go back for one. They also had Key lime trees too. :-)

    This recipe sounds delicious! Thank you for sharing.

    Happy Spring ~ FlowerLady

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  3. I keep kicking around the idea of getting a Meyer Lemon tree in a container that I'd put outside during the summer but bring in during the winter... I think one of these days I'm just gonna do it:@) Your dish looks great Sam, I'm sure the flavor is amazing!

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  4. I picked up Meyer lemons and blood oranges earlier this week. Both can be illusive around here. This dish says "spring" to me--as does most everything these days! Eight more days!

    Best,
    Bonnie

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  5. Meyer lemons are in high demand for sure Sam. If I see therm in the store I will buy them instantly and decide what to make later. The same with key limes. I will be on the watch for them now for sure.

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  6. This is the kind of recipe I love..but need the recipe right next to me..Cook..remove.. add..remove LOL..
    I made DLeibovitz's Marsala Chicken last night..same thing..:)
    The look of your dish is so pretty!I love citrus w/ chicken..I wish I had a ittle fairy that cleaned my cooktop everytime I make dishes like this..you?

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  7. Will keep my eyes open for Meyer lemons. This is a lovely dish. I don't mind all of the steps it takes to bring it to the table. Well worth it.

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  8. That is one fine looking pan of food Sam.

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  9. This is making my mouth water! I see meyer lemons all the time at Ingles and sometimes Fresh Market here...

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  10. Sam, This chicken and potato entree looks fabulous! Now I'm hungry... I've never noticed Meyer lemons in the store but now I'll be looking for them. Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

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  11. Our Meyer Lemon tree had an abundance of fruit this year....I know exactly where to get a few slices to go with the chicken!

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  12. What a delicious looking dish! I love the flavours, Sam.

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  13. This is a great dish, Sam! We are lucky to have a small grocery store nearby that carries Meyer lemons. Thanks for the recipe!

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  14. It's not easy to find Meyer lemons here, unfortunately, but this is a dish that I would go out of my way to look for them to make! Not only beautiful (I love the Meyer lemon pinwheel) but I love all of the flavors in the ingredients. Love this!

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  15. This is such a great recipe, Sam! Meyers lemons can't be beat and pairing them with chicken is a fantastic idea! Great post and delicious recipe, I'm sure!

    Bill!@www.southernboydishes.com

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  16. Sam, this is lemon chicken at its absolute best - the Meyers just make that little bit extra special!
    Mary

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  17. Sam, What a simple yet complex dish - another recipe to add to my list. Having a great heavy duty skillet like you have helps too.

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  18. Sounds like a wonderful dinner, definitely company worthy! It's crazy but I've found beautiful Meyer lemons for the last two years at Walmart, of all places!

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  19. Going to look for those lemons, not holding out a lot of hope that I can find them here in the mountains, but aren't you in the mountains too? Our local produce stands are still closed for winter. Keeping my fingers crossed, and pinning this recipe so I can find it again.

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    1. Hi Carole,
      We're in Florida for the winter, but our Ingles in the mountains almost always has Meyer lemons. I confess I had never noticed them until my BIL pointed them out. I had always bought individual lemons, but the Meyer lemons are in bags and, at least in our store, are in the organic fruit section, although I'm not positive if they are organic or that's where the produce manager decided to put them. Comforts of Home Penny lives in your area I think and she says she can find them at Ingles and sometimes at Fresh Market. If it wasn't for my BIL pointing them out, I would have never seen them. The local farm stands in Florida had them because they were grown locally. I've never seen them at farm stands in our part of North Carolina. Hope you can find them, but don't worry if you can't. I used regular lemons in this recipe, sliced them thinly and added some sugar to the squeezed juice and it worked out great. Thanks for stopping by. I really appreciate your support and always enjoy your comments.
      Sam

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  20. I have never heard of Meyer lemons, but I’ll look for them. This chicken dish looks very pretty and must taste wonderful with the other flavors such as shallots, olives and the rest. This is one to keep.

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    1. Vagabonde, do you have an Ingles Market anywhere near you? That's where I find them as well as several others who left comments who are in our area. Hope this helps, but don't worry if you don't find them. I used regular lemons in this recipe and thinly sliced them and added a bit of sugar to the juice and it turned out great. Hope you can find an Ingles.
      Sam

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  21. Well, hell. Our grocery store had Meyer lemons yesterday and I passed them by. This looks wonderful!

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  22. I always buy Meyer lemons when I see them--I like their flavor in so many recipes. I like that dish incorporates chicken thighs and chicken breasts as I am a fan of white meat

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  23. I just love Meyer lemons. When I was younger, I didn't realize they were a different species, and thought they were Unicorn Lemons, i.e. you never knew when they would show up, and they were magical:).

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  24. What a delicious way to celebrate the Meyer lemon season! A gorgeous chicken dish!

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  25. Lemon and chicken just GO together! This looks so good!

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  26. Love Meyer lemons, and this dish sounds so good! Surprisingly enough, our local Walmart carries Meyer lemons. :)

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  27. Nothing better than chicken with lemons, Sam. And Meyer lemons are the best! I have a sack of them right now. The color is divine and so is the flavor. A dish like yours makes them shine!

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  28. I just bought a bunch of Meyer lemons - perfect timing!!! Can't wait to try this:)

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  29. Not sure what the junk comment is above but..... I love the sound of this dish but time is always a factor for me and this sounds like it takes time. I have also never heard of Meyer Lemons so the chance of finding them here is remote. We do though love lemon chicken so will give this a try sometime. Hope all is well Diane

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  30. Be still my heart --- I could eat this every day of my life!

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  31. i love all the lemon flavor with the chicken. I think lemon and chicken pair so nicely together and it gives the dish a refreshing light feel. not too heavy

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  32. Sam, this chicken with Meyer lemon sounds amazing...lemony...so beautiful!
    Thanks for the recipe...hope you are having a great week :)

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  33. Hi Sam, your chicken looks perfectly browned, love this dish!

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  34. Hi Sam,
    Meyer Lemon's are the best, I always get them whenever possible. Your Meyer Lemon Chicken say's Spring, wonderful Spring!
    Your post is awesome and thanks so much for sharing with Full Plate Thursday.
    Happy Spring!
    Miz Helen

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  35. Odd, I tried to link this on StumbleUpon for more traffic and it told me this page wasn't available. Never had that happen before. Well, pinned it at least, I want to try this on my kamado grills.

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