Thursday, October 23, 2014

Crispy Baked Chicken...Shocked and Amazed!

No frying, 3 ingredients, crispy outside, juicy inside.
You know those recipes that you know are too good to be true? This is not one of them. I was fully prepared to write this one off if it didn't work - but I just found a secret that makes a beautiful baked chicken with crispy skin and doesn't involve some kind of voodoo ritual or cornflakes. Before I let you in on this game changer, there's a couple of things that need to be said.

This is all that was added to the chicken
1 - If you always buy the rotisserie chicken because it is easy, you should know that I made this in five minutes, AND it was fresh, hot, crispy, and there is not a candle in the world that can beat the smell of roasted chicken.
2 - If you always buy boneless chicken breasts, you are cheating yourself out of: money, richness of flavor, and the juiciest chicken ever.  Unless you are working with some serious sauce, boneless breasts of chicken dry out easily.
3 - "But the large package of 'bone-in' chicken breasts is just too much for our small household."  I cooked four large breasts, but could have just as easily cooked two and frozen the others. Instead, we used the leftover chicken in a creamy chicken and wild rice soup, and chicken salad.
4 - I love fried chicken skin ... there, I said it out loud. There is a reason that some of the top restaurants are serving it even without the chicken underneath. BUT, fried chicken is not fitting into the healthy eating plan and is more of a special occasion thing. This chicken was so incredibly bronzed and crispy, it didn't feel like we were "settling" for baked chicken.
5 - Seriously...I made this in five minutes, baked a sweet potato, and steamed some broccoli in the microwave and felt like a superhero.

Ready?  GO!


4 bone-in chicken breasts
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon baking powder (Shhhh. I will explain below)
1 large grin, for wearing when you see this chicken come out of the oven.

Preheat oven to 425
Cover baking sheet in foil (saves clean up)
Put a baking rack on it (totally optional, not sure it made a difference)
Mix salt, pepper, and baking powder in a small dish
Pat chicken dry with paper towels
Sprinkle salt, pepper, and baking powder mixture onto chicken
Bake for 35-45 minutes, until a meat thermometer reads 170.

Cover baking sheet with aluminum foil (saves clean up)
I added a baking rack but am not sure that it made a big difference
Pat chicken dry and sprinkle with salt/pepper mixture.
It will not have a heavy coating.
Bake at 425 for 35-45 minutes
Now, in case you were wondering:
The baking powder draws the moisture out of the skin and is what makes it crispy!
You can't taste it at all.
Don't use baking soda, it's not the same.
You could add garlic powder, onion powder, cajun seasoning, or just about anything to the salt/pepper mix.  I kept it simple to have some versatility in how I used the leftovers.  
Nope, I didn't use any oil, at all.  
You could use any variety of bone-in, skin-on chicken for this.
You could cut the breasts in half or have your butcher do it for you.
Leftover chicken simply rocks!  

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