Roasted Chicken Legs | for the love of the south

If you know me well, you know I love chicken legs. If you ever see me eating fried chicken, it will be a leg. I’m not sure why the leg. Maybe I fell in love with dark meat at an early age while most of my friends gorged themselves on chicken tenders. But knowing me, it’s  because I love street food, or food I can eat without a fork. Chicken legs required no muss, no fuss and best of all, no fork!

In fact, my love of the leg is so well known that my grandmother hides a turkey leg in the back of the fridge for me at Thanksgiving. Since most of my family loves white meat, they don’t notice the one-legged turkey. It’s a little secret between Grandma and me. She still giggles while watching me, now full-grown, chow down on a whole turkey leg. There aren’t many times in life when I act so carnivorous as when eating poultry leggies.

Here is a recipe for oven-roasted legs that is superb hot, cold or room temperature. May they make their way to your next picnic or your dinner table. I just have one request, hide a leg in the fridge for you for later. It will be our little secret.

Recipe: Serves 4

Note: If you would like more color on the chicken legs, you can place them under the broiler for a few minutes. Just keep an eye on them so they don’t burn!

1 stick of butter, melted and warm

1 teaspoon of red pepper flakes

1 garlic clove, minced

2 tablespoons of flat leaf parsley, finely chopped

Juice of half a lemon

Salt and pepper to taste

6 chicken legs, rinsed and patted dry

Preheat oven to 425 degrees

Combine melted butter, red pepper flakes, garlic, parsley, and lemon juice in a medium sized bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

Toss chicken legs in the melted butter mixture, and place the legs on a roasting pan fitted with a wire rack. Roast chicken legs for 45 minutes or until the juices from the center of the chicken leg run clear. Let the chicken sit for 10 minutes to allow the juices to redistribute into the meat. Serve with lemon wedges and fresh parsley.


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