My husband loves fried chicken. Last summer when we went to Garner State Park with my in-laws, John’s one food request was his mom’s fried chicken. I ate it, and thoroughly enjoyed it, but I mostly try to avoid fried foods in my kitchen and my diet. So when I found Ellie Krieger’s Honey-Crisp Oven Fried Chicken (which is really baked, not fried) in Comfort Food Fix, I was excited to give it a try. Perhaps I could “fry” chicken for my husband, after all!
I could only find bone-in chicken thighs with the skin on, so I had to go through the process of removing the skin myself. Apart from adding a little time to the prep and being slightly off-putting, it was not too big a deal. After all, I’m the squeamish girl who now sticks her hand up a whole chicken on a weekly basis.
The process of coating the chicken in honey and dredging it in the corn flake mixture was a little messy, but also quick. As I closed the oven door with the chicken tucked safely inside, I was feeling proud of myself for pulling it all together in so effortless a fashion. Two minutes later, I realized that I had forgotten to spray the tops with olive oil spray. Oops! I pulled the chicken back out and remedied my omission. I baked the thighs for 50 minutes, at which point my instant-read thermometer was over 165°F.
From the first bite, I loved this chicken. The crispy coating provided a pleasant crunch, and the sweetness of the honey and the spiciness of the cayenne pepper balanced one another out nicely. For my part, I especially enjoyed the taste of the dark meat, as I usually limit myself to chicken breast. John and I granted this recipe 4 stars! It was the definite highlight of our meal, which also featured sautéed greens and roasted butternut squash (both fresh from my CSA). While my husband would not go so far as to say this chicken is better than fried chicken, he did eat three thighs in one sitting.
Comfort Food Fix recipes made: 7
Comfort Food Fix recipes still to make: 146
Honey-Crisp Oven Fried Chicken
4 skinless, bone-in chicken thighs (about 1½ lbs)
2/3 cup low-fat buttermilk
4 cups corn flake cereal
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Olive oil cooking spray
2 TB honey
1. Place the chicken in a bowl with the buttermilk and toss to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least one hour and up to four hours.
2. Place the corn flakes in a food processor and process until crumbs are formed (You should have about 1 cup of crumbs). Transfer to a shallow dish and mix in the paprika, garlic powder, salt, black pepper and cayenne.
3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spray a baking sheet with olive oil spray.
4. Remove chicken from buttermilk, shaking off excess buttermilk from the chicken. Discard the remaining buttermilk. Brush each piece of chicken with honey, then dip in the corn flake crumbs, pressing hard so crumbs adhere to chicken. Spray a cookie sheet with olive oil spray and place coated chicken on sheet. Spray each piece lightly on top with olive oil spray. Bake until chicken is crisp and meat cooked through, 45-50 minutes.
Yield: 4 servings (serving size: 1 chicken thigh). Per serving, 9 PointsPlus.