Dinner with The Best Dressed Chicken


Dinner with The Best Dressed Chicken

Thursday, October 10, 2019

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From a hearty stew with distinctly Chinese flavours to sweet, sticky chicken skewers, these dinner recipes will bring a world of flavours to your table.


The Best Dressed Chicken Drumsticks with Rice and Beans


8 The Best Dressed Chicken Drumsticks

2 1/2 tsp kosher salt, divided

1 tsp freshly ground black pepper

3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

1 onion, finely chopped

1 tsp ground cinnamon or cumin

1 tsp ground turmeric, curry powder, or ground coriander

1/2 cup white rice

1 (15-oz) can chickpeas, white beans, black beans, or other beans, drained, rinsed

1/2 cup dried fruit, such as currants, raisins, cherries, or cranberries (optional)

1/2 tsp crushed red pepper flakes (optional)

1/4 cup coarsely chopped tender herbs, such as cilantro, parsley, mint, basil, and/or dill



Season The Best Dressed Chicken Drumsticks on all sides with 2 tsp salt and 1 tsp black pepper.

Heat oil in a large deep-sided skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook, turning once halfway through, until skin is golden brown, about 10 minutes total. Transfer to a plate.

Add onion, cinnamon, and turmeric to fat in skillet and cook over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add rice and stir to coat. Add 1 1/4 cups hot water, scraping up browned bits from pan, then stir in chickpeas, dried fruit (if using), red pepper (if using), and remaining 1/2 tsp salt. Nestle chicken back into skillet and bring liquid to a boil. Immediately reduce heat to low, cover, and cook until rice is tender and chicken is cooked through, 20–25 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit 5 minutes. Fluff rice with a fork, then scatter herbs over.



The Best Dressed Chicken with Spice Rub


1 The Best Dressed Chicken whole bird, around 3 pounds

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 teaspoons fennel

1 teaspoon coriander

½ teaspoon black pepper

¼ teaspoon cumin

2 teaspoons coarse sea salt

½ teaspoon paprika

Lemon halves



Set broiler on high.

To butterfly, cut out the chicken's backbone with a cleaver or a sharp, heavy chef's knife. Place the chicken skin side up in a roasting pan and press firmly on the breast with the heels of your hands until it cracks and flattens. Position the legs so they lie flat and the drumsticks point out. Tuck the wingtips over the tops of the wings to hold them in place, or cut them off. Rub the bird with the oil.

Combine fennel, coriander, cumin, paprika, salt and pepper and sprinkle this rub on both sides of the bird, with the emphasis on the skin.

Set the chicken skin side down on a grill or skin side up on a broiler rack positioned so the highest point of the bird is about 10 inches from the flame. When the skin begins to brown after 6 or 7 minutes, flip the chicken over. After about 10 minutes, when the bony side is browned, lower the heat to medium-high (400° if you're using an oven), flip the chicken again and cook another 10 minutes, or until the skin is very crisp and brown and the thickest part of the thigh reaches 165° degrees when checked with a meat thermometer. Let it rest about 5 minutes before carving.

Spoon the juices that have collected in the broiler pan or the platter over the chicken. Serve with lemon.


The Best Dressed Chicken Skewers


1 1/2 pounds The Best Dressed Chicken Boneless Thighs, cut into 1 1/2-inch–2-inch pieces

1/2 cup (packed) light brown sugar

1/2 cup unseasoned rice vinegar

1/3 cup hot chilli paste

1/4 cup fish sauce

1/4 cup sriracha sauce

2 teaspoon finely grated peeled ginger

8 bamboo skewers soaked in water at least 1 hour



Set grill pan on high heat. Whisk brown sugar, vinegar, chilli paste, fish sauce, sriracha, and ginger in a large bowl. Add chicken and toss to coat. Remove chicken and thread 4 or 5 pieces onto each skewer.

Transfer leftover marinade to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until reduced by half (about 1 cup), 7–10 minutes.

Grill chicken, turning and basting often with reduced marinade, until cooked through, 8–10 minutes.



The Best Dressed Chicken with Corn Salad


2 The Best Dressed Chicken Deboned Breasts, pounded thin

1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

¼ cup plus 1 tablespoon lemon juice

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

½ cup chopped onion

2 ears corn, kernels stripped

1 jalapeño, deseeded and minced

1 medium-size zucchini

Salt and ground black pepper

1 medium tomato, diced

1/3 cup flour

2 tablespoons minced cilantro leaves



Mix mustard and 1/4 cup lemon juice in a shallow dish. Cut each The Best Dressed Chicken Breast in half (lengthwise, so you have two thin filets) and place in the mustard mixture. Turn to coat both sides and set aside.

Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large skillet, add onion and sauté on low a few minutes, until softened. Add corn, jalapeño and zucchini and continue to cook until vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat, fold in tomato, add 1 tablespoon lemon juice and set aside.

Remove chicken from marinade, dust with flour and season with salt and pepper. Heat remaining oil in a large cast-iron skillet or grill pan on medium-high heat and sear chicken, turning once, until lightly browned and just cooked through, about 5 minutes a side. Arrange on a serving platter. Add cooking oil to salad, fold in cilantro and spoon over and around chicken.


The Best Dressed Chicken Sichuan Stew


3 pounds The Best Dressed Chicken Bone-in Thighs

2 teaspoons salt, plus more to taste

2 teaspoons, plus 1 tablespoon black pepper, plus more to taste

1 12-ounce beer

1 pound new potatoes

1 to 2 quarts vegetable oil

2 tablespoons sliced garlic

2 teaspoons cumin seeds

2 teaspoons fennel seeds

1 teaspoon Sichuan peppercorns, roughly chopped

1 star anise, left whole

2 dried chiles, minced

1 ½ tablespoons Sichuan hot bean sauce

2 tablespoons dark rice wine

3 to 4 cups chicken stock or water

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ cup soy sauce

Cilantro, for garnish



Season The Best Dressed Chicken Bone-in Thighs with 2 teaspoons salt and 2 teaspoons black pepper, cover with the beer and marinate it in the refrigerator overnight or for at least a few hours. Cook the potatoes in salted water until nearly done, drain, cut into bite-size pieces if necessary.

Heat at least 2 inches of the oil in a wok or tall, narrow pot over high heat. The more oil you use, the more chicken you can cook at one time.

When the oil is hot, fry the chicken, in batches if necessary, until slightly brown; depending on your heat, this could take 1 to 5 minutes. Stir frequently. Remove with a spider or slotted spoon and let rest until cool, then fry again — up to 5 minutes depending on your heat — until nicely browned and crisp; remove. If you have the time, refrigerate the chicken before proceeding.

Reduce the oil to about 2 tablespoons (reserve the rest for frying or other uses), and turn the heat to high. Add the garlic, and cook a few seconds, then add another tablespoon of oil.

Add the cumin seeds, fennel seeds, Sichuan peppercorns, anise and dried, and stir to combine. Add the hot bean sauce, and stir; return the chicken to the wok or skillet.

Stir in the dark rice wine and 2 cups stock or water, and stir to create a sauce. Add 1 tablespoon black pepper, the sugar and soy sauce; bring to a vigorous boil.

Add the potatoes, and continue to boil for another 10 to 15 minutes, adding more liquid as needed to keep the mixture soupy; you want to wind up with 1 to 2 cups sauce and tender potatoes. Taste, and adjust seasoning; add more black pepper if the taste isn't strong.

Ladle the chicken, potatoes and broth into bowls. Garnish with cilantro and serve with rice.


Photos: Charles Allen



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