Leek & Olive Chicken | Pumpkin Seed Pesto

Man,  I’ve been busy lately.  It’s already mid-December?? When did that happen? It’s been my spottiest period with the blog since I started it two(?) years ago,  but I’m going to get back to my consistent best soon.

This is a simple meal that incorporates ingredients that are in abundance right now to revise a few old tricks– like making Pesto.

See, it’s too cold and dark right now to grow basil,  but it turns out that thyme and rosemary do well at this time of year– at least in the middle of Georgia’s non-winters. Combine it with garlic,  pumpkin seeds, cheese (again, I don’t have pecorino, so I used cotija), garlic,  and lemon juice.  There are a few other components,  but you can see that below.


Once you spend all that time on a sauce,  you’re gonna want to chill for the rest of the night,  right? This is — just sear the chicken,  add leeks, olives, butter, then finish it under the broiler. You should probably flip it once or twice,  but if you use chicken thighs the meat is pretty forgiving.

Let’s cook.

You’ll need:

2-4 Skinless Chicken Thighs

2 Leeks, washed and sliced thinly

1 Cup Green/Black Olives, diced

2 Cups Pumpkin Seeds, toasted

1/2 Cup Cotija Cheese

3 Cloves of Garlic, minced

1 Tbs Thyme

1 Tbs Rosemary

1 Tbs Garlic Powder

2 Tbs Butter

2 Tbs Parsley, minced

2 Tbs Lemon Juice

4 Tbs Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper to taste

  1. Season chicken with salt and garlic powder, then sear on both sides, and remove from the pan. Add butter, leeks, and olives to deglaze, then return chicken to the pan and place under the broiler.
  2. Flip the chicken until fully cooked, then remove from the oven to cool.
  3. Toast pumpkin seeds on medium heat, then combine with herbs, cheese, and lemon juice in a blender, and pulse until minced.
  4. Transfer the pesto to a large bowl, stir in olive oil, and taste for seasoning. Set aside.
  5. Plate and serve.





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