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Playing Cheff Scott Conant + Wife Mel Make 2 of Their Family's Favorite Dishes (Like Cast-Iron Skillet Chicken!)

"This is a riff on a dish that was a staple weeknight dinner in my childhood home and now is once again in my own family's household. It's quick, everything cooks in a single pan, and it's a great use for leftover chicken or any other odds and ends you might have in the fridge: chunks of sausage, herbs, some vegetables, whatever. 

Like all great comfort food, it's humble but sneakily delicious—I have never been able to resist the caramelized drippings you get on the bottom of the pan. It's a wonder my cholesterol is what it is." —Scott Conant

Pro Tip: If you don't already have one, consider investing in an instant-read thermometer, which takes all the guesswork out of when the chicken is done. 

For another of the Conant family's favorite recipes, check out Scott's Turkish Beef Borek


For the Basil Chimichurri (makes 1 ½ cups):
  • 1 cup roughly chopped fresh basil
  • 1 cup roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • ¼ cup finely chopped red onion
  • 1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces, patted dry with a paper towel (from about a 4-pound chicken)
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 2 pounds fingerling potatoes, chopped into 2-inch oblique cuts (so there are two angled sides)
  • 1 recipe Basil Chimichurri


Serves: 4 to 6


For the basil chimichurri, add all the ingredients to a bowl and stir with a fork to combine. The chimichurri is best served immediately, while the herbs are still fresh, but it can be stored, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 1 day.  

Heat the olive oil in a large cast-iron skillet set over medium-high heat. Season the chicken with the salt and pepper on both sides and place the chicken pieces skin-side down in the skillet. Fill in the pan with the potatoes. (You want the pan really full so that the surface area is completely covered with chicken and potatoes.) 

Cover with a lid and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, until the chicken has released its juices and everything is golden. Flip the chicken, cover again, and cook for another 10 minutes, or until the thickest part of the chicken reaches 165°F. 

Remove from heat, add dollops of chimichurri on top, and serve immediately. 

Excerpted from Peace, Love, and Pasta by Scott Conant. Copyright © 2021 by Scott Conant. Used with permission by Abrams. All rights reserved.