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Chicken drumsticks are often relegated to kids’ meals, perhaps a notch up from chicken tenders. This is a surprisingly winning and simple preparation — and a nice change from your typical teriyaki marinade —upgraded for easier eating by trimming.

Remember this recipe for those upcoming football parties.

Chicken Legs

1 teaspoon dried sage (may substitute 1 to 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage)

Freshly ground black pepper

Kosher salt

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

2 tablespoons good-quality maple syrup

4 tablespoons cranberry sauce or relish

2 pounds chicken drumsticks (lower leg only)

Use a sharp chef’s knife or cleaver to cut off the end (ankle) of each drumstick. Discard them. This step is optional because doing so makes them easy and neat to pick up and eat.

Place the drumsticks in a gallon-size zip-top bag, along with the cranberry sauce or relish, maple syrup, oil, a four-fingered pinch each of the salt and pepper, and the sage. Seal and massage through the bag to coat evenly. Lay the bag in a glass or ceramic baking dish that’s large enough to hold the drumsticks in a single layer. Let sit for 1 hour at room temperature, turning the bag over a few times, or refrigerate up to overnight.

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Open and pour the contents of the bag into the baking dish, arranging the drumsticks in a single layer. Turn to coat with all the sauce you can extract from the bag. Roast (top rack) for about 45 minutes, until the chicken is golden brown and cooked through, using tongs to turn the drumsticks about halfway through the oven time. Serve warm.

SOURCE: Adapted from “Harvest: 180 Recipes Through the Seasons,” curated by Emilie Guelpa (Hardie Grant, 2017).


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