April 9, 2013 by caitlinvaclark
Does anyone remember the mantra chanted by Annette Bening in American Beauty? “I will sell this house today. I will sell this house today. I will sell this house today.” Well, substitute “leave” for “sell” and you’ve summed up my morning so far. It’s raining and I feel super lazy, but I have tons of errands to run and frankly, if I go one more day without a visit to the gym, I might lose all muscle mass. Like, we’re talking bag of bones (and fat), not able to do normal household chores, or become, God forbid, too weak to cook. Okay I’m being dramatic. I’m perfectly healthy. But I do need to get my act in gear and my body in shape!
Before I head out though, and I am leaving now, really, I swear… I wanted to share last night’s dinner “journey”… it was half time warp, half teleport to the South, with my Shake-N-Bake-Oven-Fried Chicken and Mustard-Studded Ham Hock Greens.
It will take you a few minutes, but it’s really worth taking the time to remove the skin from your chicken legs. The breading will still give you a crispy crust and you are getting rid of lots of fat and calories.
Make sure you marinate your meat for at least 3 hours. You can definitely let it go longer, up to a day.
When you are ready to dredge your chicken, remove the excess buttermilk and toss in a bowl with the breadcrumb mixture. Or feel free to throw it all in a clean paper bag and literally shake then bake.
Cook the chicken on a wire rack on a cookie sheet, so that the bottom crisps. And definitely take the time to put aluminum foil down on your cookie sheet- it will save you from going insane during the clean up.
Once your oven is hot, drizzle the chicken with melted butter then bake for 50 minutes. Check on the chicken after 30 and if it is getting too brown, tent the tray with tin foil.
As soon as you get your chicken in the oven, start the greens so they have time to braise. This side goes perfect with the chicken. What greens did I use, you ask. Well, funny thing, according to my package it was just “spring greens.” No elaboration. So honestly I’m not 100% sure from what plant they come. That said, my guess and recommendation is collard and/or mustard greens.
To begin, I heat some shredded ham hock with good whole grain mustard.
Then add the greens and mix with the ham and mustard. Then add 1/3 cup of chicken broth to the base of your pot and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Splash with Red Wine Vinegar just before serving.
With a side of roasted sweet potatoes, I have a pretty freaking good ole & old school dinner!
1 cup buttermilk
1 Tbs Dijon mustard
1 Tbs hot sauce
4 chicken legs
1 ½ cup dried breadcrumbs
¼ cup parmesan cheese
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
3 Tbs butter, melted
In a large bowl, mix together the buttermilk, Dijon, & hot sauce. Prepare the chicken legs by removing all skin and then sprinkling with salt and pepper. Add to the bowl to coat. Place in the fridge to marinate for 3-4 hours.
Preheat oven to 400˚F. Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil, then place a wire rack on top of the sheet.
In a large shallow dish, mix the breadcrumbs, parmesan, paprika, salt, and pepper.
Shake off excess buttermilk, then dredge the chicken legs in the breadcrumbs, coating evenly. Place on the wire rack. Once all chicken legs are coated, drizzle evenly with melted butter.
Bake for 50 minutes.
Mustard-Studded Ham Hock Greens
1/2 Tbs. olive oil
3 oz. shredded ham hock
1 Tbs. whole grain mustard
12 oz. spring greens (collard and/or mustard greens), shredded
1/3 cup chicken broth
1-2 Tbs. red wine vinegar
Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium heat. Add the ham hock and heat through, then mix in the mustard. Toss with the greens. Add chicken broth to the base of the pot. Reduce to a simmer, cover and cook for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Splash with red wine vinegar to your taste just before serving.