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You'll be hearing from the staff at Food52 in Too Many Cooks, our group column in which we pool our answers to questions about food, cooking, life, and more.
Chicken's universal appeal is pretty logical: It can be roasted or braised, fried or grilled, cooked whole or nuggeted and dipped in ketchup. Plus, we love that it's a blank canvas for flavor, just as happy bathed in lemon and wine as it is stewed and pulled apart to fill a spicy enchilada. So in honor of the mighty, versatile chicken, we've rounded up our savvy team and asked:
What is your favorite way to prepare chicken?
Laura Bray: I like to roast a whole chicken stuffed with lemons and onion until the skin is nice and crispy, but the inside remains tender and juicy. Then I proceed to eat all the skin off first! When we finish off the meat, we use the bones for homemade stock. It's the most budget-friendly process ever.
Karl: Brined, butterflied, high roasted at 500° F on a broiling pan, where underneath lay sliced carrots -- the carrots (or potatoes, or other root vegetables) prevent the fat from scorching and make for a delicious side! I might be on the braise train as well after cooking Merrill's recipe last week.
More: Brush up on the safest ways to prep and cook chicken.
Haley: Fried chicken on waffles. Otherwise, I agree with Brette on the simplicity of the black pepper roasting situation. I starred in the first grade play "Chicken Little & The Sky is Falling," and my mom kept my Chicken Little costume, so let me know if you need it to wear during your research.
Catherine: In the summertime, nothing beats fried chicken. It's crunchy, fatty, salty, and utterly delicious -- and it makes the best breakfast when eaten cold out of the fridge. However, I also love a bird that's been stewed for hours and hours in a coq au vin situation, or anything that can be stuffed into enchiladas. Sorry, chicken wings -- I was never a fan.
Danny: Fried Chicken: The breakfast of champions.
Stephanie: The simplest roast possible -- just salt and pepper, maybe rosemary if it's a special occasion.
More: 8 lunches to make with leftover chicken.
Jojo: Roasted, and stuffed with clementines, onions, and thyme!
Marian: So I don't actually eat chicken anymore, but when I was in Argentina a few years back (on my gap yah), I would order chicken -- not the requisite steak -- at every meal. They'd bring out half a chicken, perfectly cooked, presented with just half a lemon, for squeezing. It was the most flavorful poultry you ever did taste, likely because of the quality of their birds and the parrillas (traditional grills) they used.
Merrill: Thighs braised in pretty much anything.
Allison: I definitely have to second Merrill -- braised chicken thighs. Though I do love me some fried chicken...
Erin: I glaze drumsticks in sweet chili sauce (homemade, if I have time). Then I roast them in a super-hot oven or grill them until that sweet stuff is all sticky and crispy. Then I add a hefty sprinkling of cilantro and some lime squeezage.
Tell us in the comments: What's your favorite way to prepare chicken?
This post was brought to you by Just BARE®.
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