7.05.2011

simple dishes: crispy-baked lemon chicken thighs


Crispy baked lemon chicken thighs are quickly becoming one of our favorite chicken dishes at home -- very easy to make, and pretty much fool-proof!  An excellent go-to recipe during a busy work-week; these chickens are great the next day, too -- simply reheat in the oven.

Preheat the oven to 450F.  In a roasting pan, zest and juice one lemon.  Sprinkle some salt, throw in garlic cloves (as much as you like -- I usually throw in about 10), skin on.  If you have some herbs around, throw those in as well -- I had some fresh oregano recently, so I used them this time around, although thyme or rosemary work nicely, too.  Blend the mixture.  Season the chicken thighs with salt, pepper, and, if you want some heat, a sprinkling of cayenne.  Lay out the chicken thighs in the pan, skin-size up.  Zest and juice another lemon over the skin.  We normally use organic, cage-free chicken thighs.

Bake in the oven at the high temperature for 15 minutes, or until the skin turns a light brown.  Bring the oven temperature down to 350F, and bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until the chicken pieces are cooked and the skin is nice and crispy.

This method is great because the fats render out and leave the chicken skins beautifully crispy.  No additional oil required!

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