Here’s my version of a Nigella Lawson recipe. She calls for marinating drumsticks and then roasting them. In truth, I’ve marinated everything from the drumsticks to a whole spatchcocked chicken; and I’ve moved on from just roasting to tossing the bird on the grill (pictured is a boneless, skinless breast that I marinated overnight and then pounded into a filet before grilling indoors). The marinade gives the bird a nice flavor, and keeps it from drying out on the grill – when I do breasts this way they are always tender and moist. If you’re worried about buying buttermilk for just one recipe, remember that you can always use it to make cornbread, which you can then use to make a Southern Panzanella Salad – Paula Deen has a good recipe that I use; I’ll try to post it soon.
•3 lbs chicken total
•2 cups buttermilk
•1/2 cup vegetable oil
•2 cloves garlic, bruised and skinned (you know, whack ‘em with the side of a chef’s knife)
•1 tbsp crushed peppercorns
•1 tbsp kosher salt or 1 1/2 tsp table salt
•1 tsp cumin (I’m not a big cumin fan – so I used some Milwaukee Iron Seasoning – a smoky bbq blend from The Spice House, or, now, their Gateway to the North seasoning)
•1 tbsp maple syrup (no, you don’t want to use the fake stuff (NASTY!!!))
Place the chicken in a large freezer bag and add everything else. Squish it around in the bag and marinate over night (best) in the fridge; or for at least 30 minutes on the countertop.
Preheat oven to 425º. Take the chicken out of the bag, shake excess buttermilk mixture off, and arrange in a foil lined roasting pan. If you’ve used boneless, skinless breasts – here’s where I take them out of the bag, leaving one in, and then pound to a uniform thickness. Remove fillet to a plate and repeat with remaining breasts.
Toss the breast paillards on a lightly oiled hot grill and cook for four to five minutes per side, depending on the heat of your grill, until well charred and cooked through.
For bone-in pieces: drizzle with a bit of oil and bake for about 30 minutes until done – pieces will be browned and maybe scorched in parts – but the chicken will be tasty and juicy.
Try this – you won’t be sorry.
Coffee Update: OK I know everyone is waiting for this – yesterday we started a new taste test looking for ‘our’ decaf coffee after discovering that our previous fave was unavailable except for single serve sample packs. We filled two bags with a bit of Cameron’s
coffees. Monday morning we tasted the Woods and Waters, this morning the breakfast blend. Both are really nice; good flavor, no bitter aftertaste; but the winner is Woods and Waters. The breakfast blend IS nice -just a touch light for our taste. I’ll probably grind the rest of the beans and mix them into some of our leftover Dunkin’s decaf.