Roast Chicken with Potatoes and Olives


This VERY simple recipe helped me use up leftover kalamata olives. Basically, it was roasting chicken, olives and potatoes on a sheet pan at 450 degrees.

The use of a ground bay leaf was surprising and new to me. The spice blend for the pan was: fennel seeds, bay leaf and red pepper flakes all ground together. Sweet, spicy and fragrant. Usually, I look at a bay leaf as a choking hazard. This recipe made me consider the leaf in a different way. Sometimes the most familiar and simplest recipes can still teach us something new and makes cooking so much more interesting.

Tonight the roast chicken has a second life as a chicken pot pie. Again trying to use up pie crust I made a while back. The potatoes could easily become a potato salad. This is a great dish for a weekend, hot one night, cold another. But, I left the soft and flavorful potatoes alone. If they don’t disappear in the next two days,  they can always find their way to a croquette, curry or bhaji.  It seems a lot of my cooking has to do with creative ways to honor what was extra or left behind. Tried to do the same with some chocolate bars from a night of smores end of last summer. We made chocolate chip cookies but took the cookies out of the oven too early. It will have to be covered in ice-cream and eaten as a cookie dough ice-cream dessert. I don’t imagine anyone complaining.

Remember that fancy pomagranate-chili sauce I made I while ago? Well, it is just as delicious on the chicken as it was on the duck. Again, appreciating and using left-overs. It is quite a cycle of using left-overs to make something new, to make more left-overs with…so on and so on. Depending on what we make, our creativity, skill and willingness, I suppose a tasty or a boring cycle.

Makes me wonder about what I do with “leftover” stuff from my day that is not culinary. Can I use the joy of a peaceful Sunday to make myself an enjoyable Monday? Now that I’m writing about our roast chicken dinner, I might be doing exactly that!! Hah….with that thought…

Hope you have delicious weekend leftovers to make your Monday tasty,