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Pack big flavor into a convenient one-pan meal


It’s been a bit since the traybake crossed the Atlantic from Britain, where a host of cooking personalities popularized a technique that combines big flavor and weeknight convenience onto one pan.

But for the uninitiated, meat and vegetables are placed on a baking sheet along with some seasonings, then go into the oven together. The chicken is flavored as it cooks, and with the right cut of meat and the right vegetables, they all are done at the same time. Dinner is served!

For this recipe from our book “COOKish,” which limits recipes to just six ingredients without sacrificing flavor, we opt for bone-in, skin-on chicken parts, which are hard to overcook. Tender, silky, lightly charred scallions serve as an accompaniment to spice-crusted chicken and help to flavor a quick pan sauce. We roast lemon halves with the chicken, which brings out their sweetness, then squeeze them onto the pan to mix with the juices and scallions.

A sprinkle of fresh herbs at the end keeps the dish bright and lively. Tarragon plays up the licorice notes of the fennel seed; cilantro brings out the coriander. Serve it with a grain or rice pilaf, crusty bread or over polenta.


Start to finish: 50 minutes (15 minutes active)
Servings: 4
2 teaspoons fennel seeds, crushed
1 1/2 teaspoons ground coriander
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts or thighs
1 bunch scallions, cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1 lemon, halved
Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
Chopped fresh tarragon OR fresh cilantro, to serve

Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Mix the fennel, coriander, 1 tablespoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Set the chicken skin up on a rimmed baking sheet. Arrange the scallions and lemon halves around it. Drizzle with oil, then sprinkle with the spices. Roast until the breasts reach 16 degrees or thighs reach 175 degrees, 30 to 40 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a platter. Squeeze the juice of the lemon halves onto the pan and stir to combine with the scallions. Spoon around the chicken and sprinkle with tarragon.

For more recipes, go to Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street at