Most people turn to just one piece of meat when preparing chicken: the breast. And this breast is usually purchased both boneless and skinless. This is the most expensive type of chicken you can buy, which is not surprising given the high demand. It is also the least tasty cut available. Many people turn to boneless, skinless breasts because of an irrational fear of fat, a mindset many adopted during the low fat craze of the 1990s. Others choose this cut for the ease with which it can be prepared. I’m here to show you that bone-in skinned chicken quarters can also be easily prepared and much more delicious than breast meat. It takes a little longer, but the time involved is not active cooking time. Your toaster oven does all the work for you.
First of all, I would like to address the issue of fat. There is a lot of evidence now that fat is good for you, especially if it comes from properly raised organic animals. No one will argue that fat from an animal that is poorly behaved and loaded with antibiotics is good for you. Yet organic meat is different; it contains more omega 3 fatty acids than its inhumanly high counterparts. It also lacks the build-up of pesticides and antibiotics. So choose your meat wisely if you want the healthiest option.
Now let’s talk about the ease of preparation. Bone-on and skin-on cuts of meat can be easily prepared. The toaster oven creates an ideal cooking environment for such cuts. The proximity of the cooking elements makes the skin perfectly crispy without drying out the meat. Here’s what you need for simply roasted chicken quarters:
2 organic chicken wedges with bone and skin (this cut includes both thigh and thigh, always attached to each other)
2 teaspoons of extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Heat your toaster oven to 475 degrees F. Rub each piece of chicken with a teaspoon of olive oil; this will help firm the skin. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place the chicken on a baking sheet and in the toaster oven. Wait 5 minutes then lower the temperature to 350 degrees. Bake for another 45 minutes. Remove the chicken from the toaster oven and let it cool for 5 minutes before serving.
That’s all you need for a delicious roast chicken. You can, of course, flavor the chicken in different ways before you roast it. My favorite is to use fresh herbs such as rosemary and thyme, paired with lots of fresh garlic. Take 4 medium cloves and slice them. Finely chop a tablespoon of thyme and two teaspoons of rosemary. Mix the garlic and herbs in the olive oil before rubbing it on the chicken. Cook following the directions above.
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