September 26, 2009

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Greg made dinner the other night while I was tapping away like a fat little pigeon – thanks Buddy!  This isn’t it, but a fine substitute photo from an outing to Hood River a few weeks back.  Anyway, he roasted some chicken but lamented the fact that he always makes it the same way, sprinkled with fresh rosemary (the shrubs in our garden are HUGE), salt, and pepper.  Here’s my help to him (and you, if you like) in the future – a quick reference for the preparation, as well as myriad seasoning options for our dining pleasure.

Tasty Whole Chicken Legs (We’re not breast people)

To each of the seasoning combinations, add salt and as little or as much garlic as you like (fresh diced or dried ground)

Optional seasonings for each, depending on your tastes – ground pepper, red pepper flakes, and a light drizzle of olive oil rubbed on first

Use the following seasonings, alone or together, to your taste:

Asian: soy, sake, ginger, green onion, fish sauce, sweet hot sauce, peanut butter

French: sage, tarragon, thyme, rosemary, a splash of white wine in the pan

German: coarse sweet mustard, caraway seeds, a splash of apple cider vinegar in the pan (I’d probably skip the garlic on this one or maybe use just a little)

Indian: curry powder, cumin, garam masala, ginger, fenugreek

Italian: basil, oregano, marjoram, a splash of red wine or Marsala in the pan

Mexican: ground dried chipotle, cayenne, cumin, honey or agave

Spanish: smoked paprika, a dash of sherry in the pan

Classic: lemon pepper, onion, thyme, paprika, sage, brown mustard seeds

Preheat the oven to 450.  Place chicken in pan (ugly side up, with or without skin) and season your way.  Place in oven and roast for 5-10 minutes, or until it starts to crisp.  Turn the temperature to 325 and continue roasting for 15 minutes.  Flip the chicken over to the pretty side and season again.  Turn the temperature back to 450.  Roast until it is crispy and the juices run clear, usually about 5-10 minutes.