Delicious Chicken Thighs

I like good food, but I don’t like cooking every day. So, I’ve always batch-cooked, particularly for lunches. My husband’s the same way.

Now that I’m eating keto (I’m working on a post about that), we’ve tweaked the process. Actually, it’s my husband who gets the credit — it’s his tweaks that have made it so delicious. I was just going to do it in a pan rather than letting the juices drip away!

What’s different with this, compared to non-keto eating?

  • Pan roast the chicken, instead of broiling it on a roasting pan rack
  • It cooks in its juices (which we save) rather than letting the juices drip off (and dumping that in the green bin)
  • Skin-on chicken thighs rather than skinless chicken breasts.

What’s funny is that we’re doing what our grandmothers used to do – what’s new is old.

Since several people are wondering how to cook for families or cheaply or are overwhelmed by getting started, I thought I’d share our approach here.

1 large tray of chicken thighs, skin on, bone in
Spices (see below)
1-2 onions
Avocado oil

The pan, before it goes into the oven

  1. Spray or grease a large baking pan. Place your chicken thighs in the pan so they sit close together, but not tightly.
  2. Sprinkle the tops of the thighs with ground spices — it can be as simple as salt and pepper, or it can be a mix (here, he did: pepper, garlic, onion, ginger, mint, cumin, fennel, mustard, celery seed… soooo good).
  3. Drizzle with avocado oil so that the skins don’t dry out and they get nice and crispy.
  4. Add in segments of onion, scattered around the tray.
  5. Add dollops of pan drippings from previous roasted meats (chicken thighs, beef or lamb roasts, even sausage) – the gelled juices (brown gelatin) and the fats (shiny yellow-ish globs). This adds more flavour to the juices and keeps the chicken very moist.
  6. Bake at 350F for 35-40 minutes, until the chicken’s fully cooked but still moist.

Baked perfection

One thigh, at least, is usually savoured immediately after baking. And I now spoon up some of the warm juices.

The chicken, once cooled, is stored in the fridge; we eat it as is, or chopped up and in a salad. The juices get poured off and refrigerated. I use the fat when sauteeing meats or veggies or eggs, and will use a bit of the fat and a chunk of the “gel” as au jus like flavour when heating up a slice of a roast.

This approach also works for sausages and roasts. When we do roasts, we just add onions and root veggies (tossed in salt, pepper, balsamic vinegar and oil) around the meats.

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