This riff on the classic tomato-basil-mozzarella combo is as simple and pared down to make as it is impressively tasty to eat and a thing of beauty to behold. Pesto gets all the credit here. I love Rana brand, but feel free to use your favorite, or even homemade. Half the container goes on the sheet pan, and the other half gets tossed with Palmini linguine as a side. I’ve opted for burrata over mozzarella, because I love its creaminess and how easy it is to tear and toss.
Make 4 servings
- Olive oil
- 12 oz fresh grape tomatoes
- 7 oz container pesto
- 8 skin-on, bone-in chicken thighs
- 8 oz burrata
- ¼ cup grated parmigiano reggiano (or grana padano, or pecorino romano)
- ½ cup fresh basil leaves
- 2 12-oz packages of Palmini linguine (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Position a rack in the lower third of the oven. Place the tomatoes in a medium bowl. Add a tablespoon of two of pesto and a pinch of salt and pepper to the tomatoes and gently toss to coat.
2. Brush a tablespoon of oil on the bottom of a sheet pan. Pat dry the chicken thighs. Lightly season them with salt and pepper and place them on the prepared pan. Reserve half of the remaining pesto for later, then rub the rest all over the chicken, including under the skin–lifting it up, pushing a bit underneath, then smoothing the skin back down. Arrange the chicken skin-side up, and roast for 15 minutes.
3. Remove the sheet pan from the oven and add the tomatoes, scattering them around the chicken. Return the pan to the oven and roast until the chicken skin is golden and crispy, and the meat is cooked through (an internal temperature of 165°F, 15 to 20 minutes more.
4. Remove the pan from the oven. If there’s a lot of liquid in the pan, pour some out by gently tilting the sheet pan. Scatter the burrata over the chicken and tomatoes, sprinkle the parmigiano-reggiano on top, and toss the basil leaves on all around.
5. Rinse the palmini, add it to a pot of simmering water for a minute or two to warm it through. Drain and toss with the reserved pesto and serve alongside the chicken.
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