Where chicken is concerned, I proudly admit that I’ve never been a fan of either breasts or wings.
I don’t care how healthy the fitness buffs claim chicken breasts are: more often than not, they’re dry and stringy and improperly seasoned. (They’re either over-salted, under-salted, or marinated in such a way that the marinade is only on the surface and the inside’s virtually flavorless.)
Wings, on the other hand, are passable. Cooked Buffalo-style (deep-fried then tossed in a spicy sauce) and served with a blue-cheese dressing, they make a jim-dandy appetizer. Formed into drummettes (aka: chicken lollipops), you’ll find yourself fighting kids over them at birthday parties. Unfortunately, most of the time, wings hardly have any meat on them and are usually fried till a bit too tough for the average human’s teeth.
Legs and thighs, on the other hand, seem to be everyone’s favorite parts of the bird. The meat is tender, certainly more flavorful; the ratio of skin to meat is sufficient to satisfy both those who choose to peel the skin off (for health reasons, or so they claim) and all of us who will gladly eat chicken skin – and they go so well with rice and things!
Best ways to enjoy them? Well, fried works best – and, if you go to your local Mini-stop for an Uncle John’s Special. You can actually pick out the parts from the display and the drumsticks are – as shown above – huge and more than substantial. I’m not a big fan of the overly salty coating, but it keeps it interesting by adding a lively crunch to the fowl. Rice and gravy? Yes, please, definitely. (And, of course, one could always run to KFC; it’s a classic after all.)
Roasting and grilling are healthier options, of course, and chicken thigh quarters cooked this way are gorgeously succulent and flavorful. For choice, I recommend the thigh-quarter solo plates over at Kenny Rogers Roasters. Throw in some aglio i olio pasta and steamed veg, and you’re good to go.
So, what’s your favorite way of enjoying chicken?