Monday, July 2, 2012

deviled chicken drumsticks

Some foods are just made for summer. Like these deviled chicken drumsticks. They deserve a spot at your next picnic, barbecue or alfresco fire escape dinner, right next to the giant pitcher of mojitos.

The chicken is perfect fresh out of the oven, when the savory-spicy breadcrumb coating is hot and extra crispy. But it's also a winner eaten at room temperature or even the next day, if you're lucky enough to have leftovers.

Yes, call me a hypocrite. One day I'm telling you to walk away from your stove, the next I am telling you to make these awesome drumsticks. But they only need 30 minutes in the oven, so crank up that AC and get it done. Or at least wait until the temperature isn't in the 90s.

I served the drumsticks at a dinner party a few weeks ago with some fun salads: burrata with a colorful mix of tomatoes, a little olive oil and salt, and a mix of baby greens, strawberries, French feta and toasted almonds. I used a white balsamic vinegar for the dressing, which is both tart and syrupy, and perfect with berries.
But back to the chicken. What makes it deviled? The word "deviled" means hot seasonings, like the paprika, pepper and mustard used in deviled eggs. It also means food that's been coated in breadcrumbs. So this recipe, which has you coat the chicken in a mix of Dijon mustard, parmesan and cayenne pepper before rolling it in panko, fits both meanings of the word. It's also an ingenious way to add lots of flavor to the meat.

Hate dark meat? You could give boneless, skinless chicken breasts or pork chops the same treatment but it wouldn't be as picnic-friendly. There's something nice about grabbing a drumstick and eating it with your hands, no cumbersome knives, forks or even plates to get in the way of you and that wonderful chicken.

Deviled chicken drumsticks
By Ian Knauer for Gourmet via Epicurious
(Serves 4 to 6)

12 chicken drumsticks (2 1/2 to 3 lbs. total)
1/2 cup Dijon mustard
3/4 cup panko breadcrumbs
3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano (or pecorino)
3/4 tsp. cayenne (or more, to taste)
3 Tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

Preheat your oven to 450°F. Pat chicken dry, then place them in a large bowl and toss with mustard until evenly coated.

In a small bowl, stir together panko, cheese, cayenne and 1/2 teaspoon each of salt and pepper. Drizzle with butter and toss.

Dredge each drumstick in crumb mixture until coated, then arrange, without crowding, in a buttered (or foil-covered) four-sided sheet pan.

Roast until the chicken is browned and cooked through, about 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.


Sarah from 20somethingcupcakes said...

Perfect summer recipe! I just love the idea of doing drumsticks on their own, in general.

Judy said...

I'm going to try the deviled legs tonight.

Daniel said...

Doesn't "deviled legs" sound like a prurient pun?


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