Greek. Braised. Lemon. Chicken.

Sounds SO boring, doesn't it? But it isn't. My husband walked into the house when this dish was cooking and said that it smelled like home. The aroma made him feel safe and cozy, comforted and loved. Now that's quite the accolades for just a few simple ingredients, but, indeed, this is how it is with the traditional cooking of Greece--a few fresh ingredients, lots of nutrition and flavors that make you feel loved. This recipe will yield enough for eight happy people, or you can share some with friends who live alone or are recovering from a cold or a hospital stay. It's also great reheated or as a weekday lunch to take to work.

Ready to be covered with foil and placed in the oven

Greek Braised Lemon Chicken...Simplified

I grew up with this dish braised slowly in a large pot on the stove. It's a family favorite, and we always served it with rice that's cooked in the pan juices and ends up risotto-like. Often prepared with chicken, but just as much with a bony cut of pork. Ribs are amazing cooked this way, and lip-smacking good.

My father always topped the rice with a big spoonful of yogurt and stirred it all up. When you do this, you won't believe how much deliciousness one mouthful can deliver! Imagine: The onions have released all of their natural sugar and savory goodness, the lemon has added its citrus tang and aroma and the essence of the chicken bones and rendered fat have all come together to entertain your tastebuds. I's always a surprise because there's not much to this dish--just a few ingredients and not a whole lot of preparation--but, wow, is it good and comforting!!!

My simplified version is ready after one hour of cooking in the oven! Click here for a printable recipe, and don't forget the Greek yogurt to top the rice with. Just plain yogurt.

The chicken after browning in the oven.

The onions have softened and released natural sugars that will top the chicken.


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