So, my aunt took my daughter away from me for a whole week. She is out of town visiting her best friend (my cousin) I miss her terribly and the week cannot go by fast enough. Rob and I have decided that this would be a great week to make some meals that Maura might not like. I have heard so many fantastic things about Giada's Balsamic Chicken on the What's Cooking board, and this seemed like something Maura might not be into. Although, I think I may be wrong about that. I think she would absolutely love this meal! Anyway, I fully intended to try it quite a while ago. I bought some balsamic vinegar just for the occasion. And then I didn't make it...so I used the balsamic for something else! Then, my good friend Steph (better known as skidunks) said she was making this the other day, and that inspired me to actually make it! It was so good and not as hard to make as I thought it would be. I think the only thing I will do differently next time is marinade it longer. Like all day or something. I marinaded for about 2 1/2 hours and it was really good. But I think all day would make it even better. Oh, and since I didn't use the type of chicken Giada calls for in her recipe, I would probably make less of the marinade. We had a ton leftover and throwing it out makes me feel wasteful. Anyway, my changes have been made in italics.
Balsamic Chicken Drumettes (source WC nesties: original source Giada De Laurentiis)
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup honey
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup soy sauce
5 sprigs of rosemary
5 garlic cloves, halved
10 to 12 chicken drumsticks (I used 3 chicken leg quarters)
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds (I left these out because I didn't have any)
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (again, I left this out because I didn't have any)
Combine the balsamic, honey, brown sugar, soy sauce (I used less sodium soy sauce), rosemary sprigs, and garlic cloves, in a large, re-sealable plastic bag (I was clumsy and let go of the bag while getting the marinade ready and spilled it everywhere. so be careful!). Shake and squeeze the contents of the bag to dissolve the honey and the brown sugar. Add the chicken drumsticks (or leg quarters...or whatever kind of chicken you feel like using) to the bag and seal with as little air as possible in the bag. Place in the refrigerator and marinate for 2 hours.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.
Place the chicken drumsticks on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake until the skin is caramelized and very dark in spots, about 30 to 35 minutes.
Meanwhile, place the marinade in a small saucepan. Bring the marinade to a boil (in order to kill bacteria). Reduce the heat to simmer and cook over low heat until thick, about 15 minutes. Reserve.
Use a pastry brush to brush some of the cooked marinade on the cooked chicken. Place the chicken on a serving platter. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds and the chopped parsley.
I served this with oven roasted red potatoes. I tossed the potatoes, which I cut into eights, in some olive oil, salt and pepper, and rosemary. They were fantastic. I cooked them in the oven for the same amount of time as the chicken. They were a little brown on the outside, but I like them that way :-)
I also sauteed some zucchini in some olive oil and one minced garlic clove. Oh, and salt and pepper of course. They are soo good this way. I normally roast them, but have tried sauteeing them and it gives them such a different flavor. Rob really likes them this way and even went back for seconds of the zucchini. Anyone who knows my husband, knows this is extremely strange, especially since he took seconds of the zucchini before he took seconds of the meat or potatoes!