Sunday, November 8, 2009

Lemon-Saffron Broiled Chicken Thighs, Take 2

I prepared this chicken once before and raved about it. There were a couple of things I'd mentioned that I'd do differently: include the ingredients I forgot and switch up the broiling time a little to reduce blackening of the skin.

This time, I remembered to follow my previous suggestions, plus I was able to prepare the chicken marinade during daytime hours, which means much better images! As usual, click the link below to go to the original recipe -- certainly click if you have a grill.

Lemon-Saffron Broiled Chicken Thighs

1/2 tsp saffron threads, crushed
1/4 c boiling water
1/2 c extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 c fresh lemon juice
2 tsp grated lemon peel
2 tsp coarse salt
1 tsp dried marjoram
2 tsp pepper, divided
8 bone-in skin-on chicken thighs
1 tsp paprika

Steep saffron in water in liquid measuring cup for 15 minutes.

Stir in oil, lemon juice, lemon peel, salt, marjoram and 1 teaspoon of the pepper.

Pour over chicken in resealable plastic bag. Refrigerate 12 to 24 hours, turning occasionally.

Remove chicken from marinade and place on a plate, allowing excess marinade to drain off; discard marinade.

Arrange thighs serving side up on broiler rack.

Sprinkle chicken with remaining 1 teaspoon pepper and paprika. (I forgot to do this last time.)

Broil for 9 minutes. Flip chicken and return to broiler for 12 minutes.

Flip chicken again and return to broiler for 5 minutes or until internal temperature is 170°F.

This chicken was tip-top...just like last time! I couldn't help but wonder last time I made this (two months ago? say what?) if it was just a fluke that it turned out so well, like maybe the planets were aligned, Rodney and I were totally starving and thus even gerbil pellets would taste good. Fear not! This recipe is in a word, perfect.

We had this with saffron rice, like last time, and that too turned out perfectly.

When I prepared the marinade this time, I used the juice from a fresh lemon, which enhanced the lemon flavor in the chicken overall. Plus, I remembered to sprinkle on the paprika and pepper before broiling, though I didn't think those flavors really added anything. So if you forget that part, don't sweat it -- you're not missing out on much.

Changing the broiling times as I did it didn't do too much to prevent blackening of the chicken skin. I did learn that I could cut a few minutes total from the broiling time. Next time, I'll do 6 minutes, 14-15 minutes and 5-6 minutes. Maybe that will keep the skin crisp but golden brown all over. I'm looking forward to it!