SAVORY HERB-BAKED CHICKEN WITH ROOT VEGETABLES

Makes 4 servings

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 8-ounce package cracked freekeh
  •      (1 cup dry, or about 2 cups cooked)
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 2-3 chicken breasts, skinless, boneless, cut into cubes
  • 5 carrots, cut in quarters
  • 3 parsnips, cut in quarters
  • 1 medium onion, cut in wedges
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled, whole
  • 1 cup prunes, pitted (about 15)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 package of fresh poultry herb blend (or 2-3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, thyme and sage)
  • salt and pepper to taste

INSTRUCTIONS:

Preheat oven: 400 degrees

Add all ingredients to a large, oven proof pot.  If you’re using fresh herbs, just toss them, stem and all, right into the pot.  Cover and place in oven for about an hour.  After an hour, reduce temperature to 350 degrees and cook until the parsnips are tender.  Stir and make sure that the chicken remains covered with freekeh and any remaining liquid.  Cook another 20-30 minutes.  If you like to have your veggies browned, you can remove the lid for the last 10 minutes of cooking time.  Just don’t let the ingredients get too dry.

Optional: if you wish to use bone-in chicken breasts, add 10-15 minutes more of cooking time.

For a variation, try adding in diced rutabagas or turnips when they are available in fall or winter.  Be sure to peel the rutabagas before cooking, as they often are covered in a food-grade wax.