This is a well-trodden culinary path for yours truly. And oh, what beautiful and delicious path it is. As a result, I was overjoyed to return and savor all the aromatic and mouth-watering flavors. All it took was a few chops of drumsticks and thighs (skin off/bone-in) and the infusion of one of my favorite spices, curry powder.
In addition to curry powder, other pantry and fresh ingredients were included:
salt and black pepper
scotch bonnet pepper
Marinated chicken overnight. Curried chicken drumsticks and thighs were braised and simmered under low to medium heat to a fork tender finish. I was ecstatic with the finished dish.
Though I like my feathery one in different styles, maybe, a curried dish is my favorite. Have indulged in same a ‘mil and one’ times. Turned to my drumsticks and thighs as I often do. These parts are loaded with great flavors and can handle a little extra cooking compared to the white meat.
With a few chops to my skinless and bone-in drumsticks and thighs, my dark portions were ready to be immersed in:
crushed all spices (pimento)
Salt/black pepper to taste
pinch of jerk sauce
pinch of sugar for balance
splash of vinegar
Marinated and massaged drumsticks and thighs in these array of spices and ingredients. Then, brought them to room temperature and added them to a sturdy skillet with a drizzle of canola oil.
After sauteing chicken for a few minutes:
minced stock bonnet peppers
Water was added to cover chicken. This was allowed to simmer for under low to medium heat until chicken was fork tender and the right consistency in gravy was arrived at. With a few sprigs of scallion on top, my curried drumsticks and thighs were done.
I’m being pro-active. You see, once again, Mother Nature is playing tricks. One would think by now the cool days of autumn would be gracing us with its presence. But no! We’re still patiently awaiting the refreshing conditions of Fall in South Florida. Temperatures are flirting in the 80’s and 90’s which makes it feel like summer.
I’ve decided to take matters in my hands. And, what better way to do so than retreating to my humble kitchen. Call me ‘nut’s; but, I did a nosedive of sort to my thermostat. I placed it in the late sixties. That felt like Fall Florida-style. I smiled and shivered a bit.
Apples are one of the popular fruits of Fall. As a result, their prices are relatively inexpensive. I bought some McIntosh as well as a bottle of Apple Cider. I had a plan. I decided to slowly braise some drumsticks and thighs (skinless/bone-in) flavored with apple cider. I took a sip of the cider (which are basically pressed apples) and found it not overly sweet, tart and refreshing. I knew my drumsticks and thighs were going to be super-happy.
Overnight, I chopped my drumsticks and thighs in smaller portions. These were seasoned with salt, black pepper, paprika, grated onions and crushed garlic. The other ingredients used were:
A drizzle of olive oil was added to skillet.
Remnants of garlic and onion were removed from chicken pieces and dried.
A very light sprinkle of whole-wheat flour was applied to chicken pieces. This action also aided in the thickening the sauce later. Chicken pieces were then seared on both sides on medium to high heat so as to lock in flavors. These were set aside.
Chopped root vegetables were added to skillet under low to medium heat. These were seasoned with a sprinkle of paprika, salt,black pepper, and a splash of vinegar. Fresh rosemary and thyme were also added.
As soon as veggies were sautéed and combined, apple cider was added along with cold tap water.
Seared chicken pieces were added back to skillet.
This was simmered under low to medium heat for approximately 30 to 40 minutes or until fork tender (a fall from the bone effect).
Half-way through cooking process, chicken pieces were turned and to ascertain if additional liquid was needed.
Braised chicken was served with a creamy Irish potato side dish and a fresh spinach and tomato salad.(Not in pic). As I sat and devoured my comfort dish, I reached for my warm throw making sure not to spill any of that rich sauce on same.
I guess my palate was in search of something out of the culinary box. I went with the flow and it led me down the beta carotene path; a road that’s earthy and wholesome. I love carrots. I love them in salad, soups, stews, roasted and of course blended and made in a drink.
It was going to be a chicken dish. However, my palate craved one that would stand out and simultaneously caress my taste buds. My plan was to use my earthy carrots and create a spectacular dish with roasted chicken. One that would surprise my somewhat temporary ‘picky’ palate. As such, I decided to make a creamy carrot sauce. Already I had four pieces of dark meat (2 legs/2 thighs) marinated with salt and black pepper to taste, crushed garlic and grated onions.
Method – Chicken:
Chicken was brought to room temperature. Onions and garlic were removed and set aside to go in when roasting.
In cast iron skillet a drizzle of canola oil was heated. Then chicken pieces were dried and seared on both sides so as to lock in flavors.
One of the three carrots was sliced length-wise and placed on top chicken for roasting along with lemon wedges. A splash of water was also added as well as grated onion and crushed garlic that were set aside earlier from marinade.
Chicken roasted for approximately 45 minutes at 375 degrees turning once. The juices expelled from chicken, onions, and lemon wedges were used to baste chicken.
Method – Carrot sauce:
The other two carrots were roughly chopped and placed in a stock pot with tap cold water and a splash of milk for creaminess. To that, a pinch of cinnamon, salt, jalapeno (a small piece) and thyme were added. Carrots were simmered on low to medium heat until fork tender.
After cooling, carrots were placed in blender and pureed to a smooth consistency. Then this was added back to stock pot along with a pat of butter for a silky finish.
Roasted chicken was served alongside creamy carrot sauce with roasted carrots and fresh parsley as garnish.