This dish from the Barefoot Contessa is just as tasty as fried chicken, but is much healthier because it is baked. Chicken pieces are dipped in wine and mustard and then coated with panko, which are Japanese breadcrumbs. The recipe calls for a whole chicken, cut up, but I used chicken drumsticks and thighs instead. I found a half cup (125 ml) of mustard and a half cup (125 ml) of white wine to be much more liquid than I needed, so consider cutting the quantities in half. I cooked the chicken for 15 minutes longer than the recipe called for, as it was not done in 50 minutes.
Avoiding Additives and Preservatives
Panko usually does not contain preservatives, but check the label to be sure. Make sure your butter does not contain colour and look for a mustard without sodium benzoate or sulfites; I use President’s Choice Old Fashioned Dijon. I used a white wine from Frogpond Farm that has no sulfites added. For more recipes using all-natural ingredients, visit www.eyeforarecipe.ca.
- 4 garlic cloves
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) minced fresh thyme leaves
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 cups (500 ml) panko (Japanese bread flakes)
- 1 tablespoon (15 ml) grated lemon zest (2 lemons)
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) good olive oil
- 2 tablespoons (30 ml) unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup (125 ml) Dijon mustard, such as Grey Poupon
- ½ cup (125 ml) dry white wine
- 1 3½- to 4-pound (1.75 to 2 kg) chicken, cut in eighths
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C)
- Place the garlic, thyme, 2 teaspoons (10 ml) salt, and 1 teaspoon (5 ml) pepper in a food processor fitted with the steel blade and process until the garlic is finely minced. Add the panko, lemon zest, olive oil, and butter and pulse a few times to moisten the bread flakes. Pour the mixture onto a large plate. In a shallow bowl, whisk together the mustard and wine.
- Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Sprinkle generously all over with salt and pepper.
- Dip each piece in the mustard mixture to coat on all sides, and then place skin-side down only into the crumb mixture, pressing gently to make the crumbs adhere. Place the chicken on a sheet pan crumb-side up. Press the remaining crumbs on the chicken pieces.
- Bake the chicken for 40 minutes. Raise the heat to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C) and bake for another 10 minutes, until the crumbs are browned and the chicken is cooked through. Serve hot, warm, or at room temperature.
From Foolproof, by the Barefoot Contessa