Chicken Marbella


Being a lover of olives I knew after my first taste of this chicken dish at a wedding that I would one day have to make it myself.  I’ve actually made it a few times now, but just haven’t had a chance to post the recipe – so here goes!

The olives and capers make it a little salty, and the prunes and figs balance it out with a little sweetness. It’s a big recipe, serving 6-8, and it’s a great one to make the night before you’ve got company, then pop in the oven an hour before dinner is served.

The recipe is from the Whitewater cookbook.

What you need:

  • 5 lbs chicken pieces (I don’t like to use breasts as they come out  a little dry)
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • 2 tablespoons fresh oregano or 1 tablespoon dried
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup prunes, chopped into small pieces
  • 1/2 cup dried figs, chopped into quarters
  • 1/4 cup green olives (I used extra)
  • 1/4 cup capers with a bit of juice
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 2 tablespoons parsley (garnish)

What you do:

1. Combine all the ingredients except the parsley and marinate the chicken overnight in the fridge.  Turn the chicken pieces once in a while to coat them.

2. Preheat the oven to 350F and bake the chicken with the marinade for 50 minutes.  Baste frequently. It should be a deep golden brown colour when it’s done.

3. Garnish with parsley when serving.

I like to serve it with a nice crusty loaf of bread. And if you don’t have a lot of people eating, it’s great for leftovers.


Chicken Tomatoes and Potatoes Oliver

My friend Jen has a Jamie Oliver cookbook, which is where I found this recipe – and it was a big hit with everyone who ate it.  There are a few steps involves in putting it together, but in the end you pop it in the oven, and it comes out ready to eat. When I first made it I had a fabulous variety of different coloured cherry tomatoes, but when I took these photos I didn’t have the same access to great tomatoes.  I recommend the variety, but it’s really good with just the regular red ones.

Of course I thought olives would be a good addition, because I think everything is better with olives.  If you don’t agree, feel free to leave them out!

What you need:

3/4  lb small new potatoes

6-8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

olive oil

salt and pepper

splash of red wine

5oo or so grams of cherry tomatoes

1/2 cup black or green olives

5 cloves of garlic, sliced

a few tablespoons of fresh oregano

red wine vinegar

What you do:

1.  Cook the potatoes in boiling water until you can pierce them easily with a knife.

2.  Cut each thigh into strips of three pieces each.

3.  Put a tablespoon or two of olive oil in a bowl with salt and pepper.  Add your chicken and mix it up so all the pieces of chicken get coated.

4.  Fry the thighs in a hot frying pan until they are quite browned and almost cooked through.  You can deglaze the pan with red wine if you want.

5.  Boil a pot of hot water and place the cherry tomatoes in it, after giving each one a little poke with a knife.  After a minute in the hot water, pour it out and rinse in cold water.  Then pinch off the skins.  If you’re in a hurry you can skip this step, but it tastes so good this way!

6. When the potatoes are cooked, give them a little squish, as you can see in the photo below.

7.  Put the potatoes, chicken, optional olives and tomatoes in a roasting dish.

8.  Using a mortar and pestle, bash up the oregano with some salt and pepper.  Add this to the pan, along with the garlic, a little olive oil, and a few sprinkles of red wine vinegar.

9.  Bake for 40 minutes at 400F.