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Zaatar Chicken (or Tofu) with Green Tahini Sauce and Broccolini - a simple flavorful Middle Eastern sheet-pan dinner that is vegan adaptable and gluten free. 

Roasted Zaatar Chicken ( or tofu) with Broccolini and Spring Green Tahini Sauce

  • Author: Sylvia Fountaine
  • Prep Time: 10
  • Cook Time: 35
  • Total Time: 45 minutes
  • Yield: 2
  • Category: Main
  • Method: Sheet Pan
  • Cuisine: Middle Eastern

Description

Zaatar Chicken (or Tofu) with Green Tahini Sauce and Broccolini – a simple flavorful Middle Eastern sheet-pan dinner that is vegan adaptable and gluten free.

Ingredients

  • 2   4-6 ounce pieces chicken – or tofu – or both! See notes.
  • 68 ounces broccolini or broccoli rabe
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • generous pinch salt and pepper
  • 1 tablespoon zaatar spice blend ( or see notes)
  • zest from one lemon
Spring Green Tahini Sauce
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 fat garlic cloves
  • 23 thin slices jalapeno ( optional, or use cayenne to taste)
  • 1 small bunch cilantro ( small stems ok, or sub Italian parsley)
  • 1/2 cup tahini paste
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt, more to taste

Instructions

Heat oven to 425F
Place chicken (or tofu) on one side of a parchment-lined sheet-pan. Brush chicken ( or tofu) with olive oil and sprinkle both sides with salt. Sprinkle the top with a generous amount of zaatar spice – 1 teaspoon, per piece of chicken.
In a medium bowl, toss the broccolini with 1-2 teaspoons of olive oil, season with salt and pepper and 1 teaspoon lemon zest. Place it next to the chicken on the sheet-pan.
Place all in the oven to bake and check the broccolini after 12-15 minutes. Using tongs, remove it to a plate and cover with foil.
Continue cooking the chicken ( or tofu)  until it is cooked through, keeping in mind that bone-in, skin on chicken thighs and legs will take longer to bake ( 30-40 minutes) than boneless skinless chicken breasts ( 20-30 minutes) Tofu filets will take  25-30 minutes.
While this is roasting, make the Spring Green Tahini Sauce. Place all the ingredients in a blender except the tahini paste. Blend until smooth. Then add the tahini paste, blend again until smooth. Taste, adjust salt and lemon. You will not need all the sauce so save some in a mason jar in the fridge to drizzle over buddha bowls, veggies and salads during the coming week. A nice gift to your future self.

Notes

Skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs and legs will for sure have the best flavor, but feel free to use breast meat for lower fat and calories. When choosing tofu -use firm or extra firm tofu. ( I love Trader Joe’s organic, sprouted tofu.) Blot dry and cut into ¾-1 inch thick pieces.

If you can’t find zaatar, sub an equal blend of cumin, coriander and sesame seeds ( 1 tsp each) and a pinch of dried thyme if you have it. Sumac gives zaatar it’s tang, so if you don’t have it, a squeeze of lemon at the end of roasting will mimic this. Make sure to season chicken and tofu with salt.