Today was the first day back to work after the holiday. I had quite a bit of time off with the family, and it was hard to get back to into the daily routine. I actually cut out just a bit early, because I knew that with the girls being out of school on winter break for another week, the hubs might need a break. I was right. The save for the day was really the weather, not my coming home. I do not remember another Kansas December in my lifetime that hit over 60 degrees!
I stopped at the local grocery store on my way home and picked up some healthier chicken drumsticks. I like the brands that don’t use salt water to plump them up. My youngest really likes “fat chicken on the bone”, as she calls it. I prefer white meat, but for the ease of preparation I decided to use only legs. After the first day back to work in almost a week, I wanted ease!
I have been making oven-fried chicken for decades. I adapted this recipe from the book In the Kitchen with Rosie: Ophrah’s Favorite Recipes. She was Oprah Winfrey’s cook in the ‘90’s and put out a cookbook of healthy (healthier) foods. The first time I made this recipe I made it exactly. I really didn’t like the combination of spices that were used, so I changed it up a bit. Over time, I quit using the chicken legs and stuck to the breasts, using my own spice preferences. Well, tonight I went back to the legs, and no breasts. I also decided to substitute panko for the traditional bread crumbs. Payoff! Tonight’s was the best on record. Everyone enjoyed it. I will give you my version of the recipe, and you can feel free to make your own adjustments and substitutions.
- 6 chicken legs or chicken pieces
- 3 ½ cups ice water
- Nonstick spray
- 1 cup plain nonfat yogurt
- 1 cup panko, or breadcrumbs
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- ½ teaspoon paprika
- Black pepper
- Salt to taste
Wash the chicken pieces and submerge them in ice water. (This is the key to success). Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Coat a baking sheet with nonstick spray. Put the yogurt in a medium bowl. Mix the breadcrumbs, flour and spices together in a large bowl. Remove 2 pieces of chicken from the ice water and coat thoroughly in the yogurt. Remove from the yogurt, shaking the excess gently from the chicken. Roll the chicken pieces in the flour, breadcrumb mixture. Place on the prepared baking sheet. Continue until all pieces are coated and on the sheet. Spray the chicken pieces lightly with cooking spray. Bake on the bottom rack of the oven for 1 hour, turning the pieces every 15 minutes to ensure even browning. You may need to re-spray the top with the nonstick spray after turning the chicken.
I usually serve this with baked potatoes, corn and a nice salad. Tonight I omitted the salad, but added some lima beans to the plate for color.