Two weeks ago, the team was eagerly taking notes and happily trying recipes from GP’s newest (and quite possibly most gorgeous) cookbook, It’s All Easy, in the Williams-Sonoma test kitchen. On the menu? The Zuni Sheet Pan Chicken and Zucchini Cacio e Pepe.
The entire cookbook is written for the super-busy home cook (I’ll raise my hand to that!). And it was easy to see the book’s dedication to fresh, rich, simple flavors in the sampling of recipes we experienced. Both dishes were equally dinner party-worthy, equally easy, and extremely approachable using easy ingredients from the pantry and grocery store.
The Zuni Sheet Pan Chicken was inspired by San Francisco’s Zuni Cafe (at the top of my list for the next visit!) and its world famous roasted chicken dish. GP put her own spin on it to become a go-to weeknight meal with roasted garlic, lemons, anchovies, and giant pieces of french bread that caramelize with the juices of the pan and quite possibly make up my favorite crunchy, gooey bite. I was so impressed that this one-pan/one-sheet dish can be finished in under an hour (which is pretty rare in my kitchen when roasting such a large bird), and being made in only one dish it makes cleanup sooo much easier. The beauty of this recipe too is it’s truly a complete meal; a tender roast chicken atop crispy, toasted bread and a bed of fresh, seasonal greens. I followed the recipe to a tee, adding just a bit more garlic and bread, because in my world you can never get enough garlic and bread. Ever.
The second recipe we learned while in the WS test kitchen was GP’s Zucchini Cacio E Pepe. It’s almost not even fair to call this a recipe because it’s so, so easy. If you haven’t used or thought of using a spiralizer, this recipe alone is reason to take the plunge. Beautifully simple, yet classic made in under 15 minutes which means it can be made in a pinch, any night of the week. Think of it as your new favorite summer pasta dish; healthy with its zucchini noodles and light with a dusting of salt, pepper and Parmesan cheese. One great tip we learned during the class; when spiralizing make sure to spin about four times and tear the noodles. If you spiralize the entire zucchini in one go you’ll have one giant zoodle making it more difficult to eat.
Next up for me I plan to make GP’s black bean soup and taquitos, but I’d love to know if you’ve checked out the book and what successes you’ve had with the recipes? Truly, MKR
P.S. Hop over to yesterday’s post to read about our team’s recent cookbook club experience at Williams-Sonoma and enter to win your own copy of It’s All Easy and GP’s favorite tool, the spiralizer. xo
- 1 whole (3.5 lb) chicken, cut into 8 pieces
- 6 large garlic cloves, unpeeled, smashed with the back of a knife
- 1 teaspoon very finely chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 teaspoon very finely chopped fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1 lemon, zested with a Microplane then cut in half
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 baguette, torn into roughly 1- to 2-inch pieces
- 2 anchovies, finely chopped or smashed with a fork
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup water
- 4 large handfuls of arugula, mustard greens, kale, escarole or whatever greens you like
- Lemon wedges, optional
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
- Arrange the chicken pieces skin side up on a large rimmed baking sheet or in a large baking dish or roasting pan and scatter the garlic cloves around them.
- In a small bowl, combine the rosemary, thyme, salt, several generous grinds of pepper, the lemon zest, and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Mix together and rub all over the chicken, being sure to get some under the skin.
- Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast the chicken, undisturbed, for 40 minutes. After 40 minutes, remove from the oven and arrange the torn bread and zested lemon halves in between the chicken pieces, tossing them in any juice the chicken has released. Drizzle everything with another glug of olive oil (about 2 tablespoons) and return the pan to the oven to roast for 10 minutes more.
- Meanwhile, combine the anchovies, vinegar and 1/4 cup water in a small bowl and set aside. Place the arugula in a large shallow serving bowl.
- Remove the chicken from the oven and immediately add the anchovy mixture-this will help deglaze the pan so you don't lose all those nice crispy bits.
- Use tongs (or your fingers) to pluck out the croutons and add them to the serving bowl with the arugula; toss with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and a pinch of salt. Top with the chicken pieces and lightly tent the bowl with aluminum foil.
- Next, take the garlic cloves and squeeze them out of their skins back onto the baking sheet and squeeze the roasted lemon halves over the baking sheet to release all their juice.
- Use a wooden spoon or spatula to crush the softened garlic cloves and scrape up as much of the crusty bits on the bottom of the pan as possible.
- Pour about half the garlicky pan sauce over the chicken and bread salad and serve with the remaining sauce on the side, and lemon wedges to finish, if desired.
- 3 medium zucchini, spiralized
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese
- In a large bowl, toss the zucchini noodles with the olive oil and pepper. Add the cheese, toss to combine, and season with salt to taste.