Apple & Honey Chicken Drumsticks

05AppleHoneyChickenbfLOI came across this recipe, from the nice folk at Food Network Magazine, at just about the same time I came across this sale on pretty decent quality chicken legs and thought to myself: ‘why not?’ The combination is pretty basic – apple cider, cider vinegar, honey, lemon zest, salt, pepper, a dab o’ butter, and crushed red pepper – but the taste is nice, and you don’t need any dipping sauces. The one thought my sister had, after we polished off a number of them over wine and conversation is to mebbe double the sauce and marinate the chicken in half first.

02LemonGraterbfLOI may just have to try that.

•12 to 15 skin-on chicken drumsticks
Seasoned salt and freshly ground pepper
•2 cups apple juice
•1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
•1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
•2 tsp honey
03CiderVinegarStirbfLO•Grated zest of 1 lemon
•1/8 to 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
•1 tbsp unsalted butter

If you’re going to take my sister’s advice (and I would); double the juice, cider, soy sauce, honey, lemon zest, and pepper flakes and combine them all in a pan over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer and cook until thickened and syrupy, about 30 minutes.

01ChickenRackSeasonedbfLOSet aside to cool, then pour half over the chicken in a plastic zipper bag, toss to coat well, then stash in the fridge for four hours or overnight.

When ready to bake, heat the oven to 450º, remove the chicken from the marinade and arrange on a rack fitted into a rimmed baking pan.

Season with salt and pepper, then pop into the oven for 30 minutes.

Turn the drumsticks and return to the oven for another 30 minutes.

04aChickenBakedbfLOSince I followed the original recipe, I simply salted and peppered the drumsticks and placed them in the oven, then made the sauce while they were baking.

Once the chicken is baked, remove from the oven and toss in a large bowl with the cooled cider mixture and the tablespoon of butter to coat, then serve.

06AppleHoneyChickenPlatebfLOAs I noted above, even without doubling the sauce and doing the marinade, this was a tasty batch o’ chicken; just imagine how fine it would be with the marinade?

Rich and I had them (first) for dinner, with some crispity baked fries; then I pulled out the leftovers the next afternoon as a munchie with that wine and conversation.

Any way, marinated or not, hot from the oven for dinner, or passed at room temp as a munchie, this made for a nice option when you feel like chicken.

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