Sunday, 26 April 2009

Nigella's Buttermilk Roast Chicken

I've been making a lot of variations on a roast chicken salad for lunches lately. I love how the chicken can really make the salad into a meal, which is my biggest complaint about salads usually. I started out buying a BBQ chicken from the supermarket and shredding it, but decided to try roasting my own chicken pieces. I could use the cheap pieces of chicken and I could play with my own flavours.

This is my first experiment. I didn't go for anything too fancy, I was just aiming for a nice flavour that was about as strong as you would get from a supermarket BBQ chicken. I googled "best roast chicken" and came up with Nigella's buttermilk chicken drumsticks.

It hardly complicated, just mix everything together, marinate and then cook.

The ingredients are very simple, with the interesting addition of maple syrup. The chicken turned out lovely and juicy, with a gorgeous golden finish. It looked beautiful, but it tasted quite underwhelming. I only wanted a subtle flavour, but this really didn't have any flavour to speak of.

I'm not sure if I did something wrong, but I don't think I'll be trying this again. There are so many other marinades recipes out there to try.

Buttermilk Roast Chicken
by Nigella Lawson

(I halved this recipe and used chicken thigh pieces instead)

12 chicken drumsticks (approximately 1.25kg total weight)
500ml buttermilk
60ml vegetable oil, plus 2 tbsp extra for drizzling
2 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly crushed
1 tbsp crushed peppercorns
1 tbsp sea salt or 1½ tsp table salt
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tbsp maple syrup

Place the chicken drumsticks into a large plastic freezer bag and add the buttermilk and 60ml of vegetable oil.

Add the lightly crushed garlic cloves to the bag along with the crushed peppercorns and salt.

Sprinkle in the ground cumin and add the maple syrup, then gently squeeze the bag to mix the marinade ingredients together and coat the chicken.

Seal the bag and leave the chicken to marinate in the fridge, ideally overnight, or out of the fridge for at least 30 minutes and up to two hours.

Preheat the oven to 220C.

Take the chicken pieces out of the bag, shaking off the excess marinade, and arrange them in a roasting tin lined with foil.

Drizzle over the remaining two tablespoons of oil, then transfer to the oven and roast for about 30 minutes, or until golden-brown and completely cooked through.

To serve, place two drumsticks onto each of six serving plates.

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