CHICKEN THIGHS WITH FENNEL, OLIVES AND LEMON
1 lemon, thickly sliced 1 tbsp (45 mL) olive oil 1 tbsp (15 mL) butter 12 chicken thighs 4 large fennel bulbs Small pinch of saffron threads 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) salt 2 cups (500 mL) chicken stock 1 cup (250 mL) green olives, pitted 2 tbsp (30 mL) flat-leaf parsley, coarsely chopped Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and arrange lemon slices on it. Sprinkle lightly with salt and bake on top rack of preheated oven for 12 minutes. Remove pan from oven and set it aside. Turn oven down to 350 F (180 C). In a large, heavy, ovenproof frying pan, heat 1 tablespoon (15 mL) of the oil with the butter until sizzling. Brown the chicken thighs well on one side and lightly on the other side. Set chicken aside. Trim the fibrous stalks from the fennel, set each bulb upright on a cutting board and cut down each bulb into four slices, each about 1/2 inch (1.25 cm) thick, keeping the root ends of the bulb attached. Cook fennel over medium heat in the same pan used for the chicken until well browned on all sides, adding more oil if necessary. Set fennel aside and wash out the pan. Grind saffron with a mortar and pestle, along with 1/2 teaspoon (2.5 mL) salt. Pour chicken stock into the pan, bring it to a boil, add saffron and cook for one minute. Add chicken, skin side up. Arrange fennel around and on top of the chicken, and spread the olives and lemon slices on top. Transfer pan to the centre of the preheated oven and bake uncovered for 30 minutes. Serve with parsley sprinkled on top, along with couscous, orzo or rice and a green salad. Serves 6.