When the twice-weekly ‘What in the world am I going to make with this chicken?’ thought crossed my mind the other day, I had a vision of black olives and artichokes with rice. Yes, rice. If you read my blog regularly, you know that I am not a big rice eater. But, Mark loves rice, and I love Mark, so I am constantly on the lookout for new ways to surprise him with a new rice dish. Well, y’all, I managed to pull it off again. This Mediterranean baked chicken and rice won Mark over from first bite, and he requested that I make it again someday soon. Truth be told, he used his ‘I’m impressed’ involuntary eye wink and ‘I-totally-love-it’ side nod throughout his petition. It was fer re-al, y’all. It was the ‘This is why I married you, I love you and your food’ look. I can’t buy that. Nope. But, I’ll take it as a happily-ever-after perk whenever it comes along. Yep.
Anyway, back to the food. This baked chicken casserole is sooo easy to make. All you have to do is brown the chicken, prep the rest of the ingredients, and pop the one-pot dish into the oven.
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Easy, Breezy Mediterranean Baked Chicken and Rice Satisfies
I added mushrooms, onions, and green and red peppers to the artichoke/black olive mix. Instead of browning the veggies like I usually do, I poached them for a few minutes in the chicken stock that I used to deglaze the Dutch oven. This cooking method melded all the ingredients together well enough to really inject the cooked rice with their collective aromatics. It was a good decision that I’ll make again.
I also adjusted the seasonings right before topping the mixture with the chicken and baking it. The end result? Well, all that was left on Mark’s plate after dinner were the chicken bones. That’s all the result I need to know about, and I’ll take the bet that this information may likely seal the deal for you as well. Just saying…
This Mediterranean baked chicken and rice is a keeper, y’all. Perfect for a potluck, too. Just cut the cooked breasts into strips and that’s it. The abundant exotic rice supply stretches the dish as far as the buffet eye can see, and the cut breasts give the dish at least 12 to 14 small servings that’ll make you look like the home chef du jour of the event.
And it’s just sooo beautiful, too, right?
Mediterranean Baked Chicken and Rice
- 3 1/2 to 5 pound cut-up whole chicken
- 2 tablespoons gluten free Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 3 teaspoons garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 cups gluten free chicken stock
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked white rice
- 1 small onion chopped
- 1 green bell pepper seeded and chopped
- 1 red bell pepper seeded and chopped
- 1/2 cup thawed frozen or canned artichokes drained and chopped
- 1/2 cup pitted black olives cut in half
- 1 cup mushrooms cleaned and sliced
- Garnish with crumbled feta or Parmesan optional
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- Mix Worcestershire sauce, paprika, salt, black pepper, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, and dried parsley in a large bowl.
- Coat chicken with seasoning mixture. If you have time, marinate chicken for 30 minutes. It will still be good if you don't marinate it, though.
- Remove chicken, and discard marinade.
- Brown chicken in olive oil in large Dutch oven. (I lightly browned the chicken to ensure that the breast stayed really moist while baking. This is how I brown whole, cut-up chickens so that each piece is moist, even for leftovers).
- Deglaze pot with 1 cup of chicken stock. Add remaining ingredients - except for rice and garnishes - to the pot. Cook over medium heat for 10 minutes. Adjust seasonings, adding more spices and herbs that you added to the chicken before browning.
- Stir in rice until well-incorporated. Lay chicken on top of rice, vegetable, and broth mixture.
- Cover and bake for 1 hour. Remove lid to broil top of chicken for about 2 minutes to brown it further, if desired.
- Remove from oven. Keep covered for 10 minutes before serving to ensure that all of the rice has the same texture.
- Garnish with cheese, if you so desire, and dig in...