One of the advantages of coming home earlier is I have more time to make a healthy and tasty dinner while having the time to write about it for this blog. I’m a big fan of chicken thighs, they are so much tastier than chicken breasts and cook so much better. I had bought a value pack of thighs on Sunday and figured since I was home at 4pm yesterday I’d have time to do something with them, but what? I started going through my bookmarks looking for a recipe. I usually use recipes as the framework of cooking, using similar meats and/or methods but modifying it to make it my own. As an aside, how many people read the comments on recipes? I do, not only to get tips on making the dish better, but for the comedy value as well. The ones that I love are those that write they love the recipe, but I made a few changes. Then they proceed to write at length about what they changed. For instance, I saw this one that I may try tomorrow, you have some comments where people have gone through and replaced just about all the ingredients with something else and/or added things or changed the cooking method even and then say how they will make this recipe for their family weekly. While you may make that dish for your family, you aren’t making the recipe that is on the site.
So, back to my search for something to do with the thighs. I saw this one on Ree Drummond’s site that looked good, but I wasn’t in the mood for BBQ, and if I was I’d use the Weber and do them up right. I have a couple of ones that use a pressure cooker, but I was thinking something crispier since they were bone-in, skin-on thighs. Then I remembered one that I had seen in Bon Appetite magazine, basically a method for cooking chicken thighs that was easy and made nice and crispy skin. After some creative googling, I found it and set about replicating it.
This was nice and easy, since all it required was seasoning the chicken with salt and pepper and cooking it, simple enough, right?
The key is to render the fat of the skin down to get it nice and crispy. So once the oil is hot you put the thighs skin side down in the pan for 2 minutes, then reduce the heat to medium and cook for another 12 minutes.
One thing I have learned over the years of cooking was to season generously. For meats you really need to salt with a heavy hand. When I cook a whole chicken I really cover the meat, both sides, with salt. It really makes a difference. Once the chicken cooks skin side down for 12 minutes, you move it to a 475 oven for another 13 minutes, keeping them skin side down.
After the 13 minutes is up you flip them over and cook skin side up for another 5 minutes to get them really crispy.
While this was cooking I thought about a side. Someone had given my wife a squash and tomatoes from their garden recently so I figured I’d cut those down and sauté them for a nice light side.
Onion, thinly sliced squash and quartered cherry tomatoes. Started off with the onions in olive oil to get a nice caramel color on them.
Then added the squash (think it is actually yellow zucchini).
I seasoned it with just salt at first. I added some vegetable broth, about 2 TBPS, and covered the squash for about 5 minutes to steam them so they got soft.
I threw in the tomatoes at the end along with some herbs de province.
Here is chicken out of the oven, look at how yummy those are.
Here is the plating, excuse the choice of plate, I normally would use one of the ones you see the chicken on, but I grabbed one of the Tupperware ones first and just went with it.
I ended up eating two of the thighs and still have a couple left to take for lunch today.