I am Smitten

Do you read the blog, Smitten Kitchen? If not you should; right now. I will wait.

I love Deb. First I love that her name is Deb and second I love that everything she makes is delicious. While that may seem just like another one of my sweeping statements, it is also the truth. Now, some of her items are a bit out there, I will give you that. For example I have no desire or time to make Butternut Squash Salad with Farro and Pepitas, mainly because I don’t know what those last two things are.

BUT I have made a variety of her more normal dishes and my favorite is Buttermilk Roast Chicken. It is my go-to chicken dish on busy weeks. All you do is mix sugar, salt, pepper, garlic and paprika into buttermilk pour it over chicken, let soak and bake.

Delicious and so, so easy.

buttermilk roast chicken, round 1 
adapted only minimally from Smitten Kitchen

2 cups buttermilk (or 2 cups regular milk with 1 tsp white vinegar, wait 5 minutes then use)
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon table salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons paprika, plus extra for sprinkling
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
2 1/2 to 3 pounds chicken parts (we used all legs)*
Drizzle of olive oil
Flaked or coarse sea salt, to finish

Whisk buttermilk with garlic, table salt, sugar, paprika and lots of freshly ground black pepper in a bowl. Place chicken parts in a gallon-sized freezer bag (or lidded container) and pour buttermilk brine over them, then swish it around so that all parts are covered.
Refrigerate for at least 2 but preferably 24 and up to 48 hours. (This is key. Don’t try to forget and make it the same day. Mix it all up on Sunday and bake it after work Tuesday. Or have your babysitter do it like I do.)

When ready to roast, preheat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking dish with foil (totally necessary – super easy clean up)
Remove chicken from buttermilk brine and arrange in dish. Drizzle lightly with olive oil, then sprinkle with additional paprika and sea salt to taste.
Roast for 30 minutes (for legs; approximately 35 to 40 for breasts), until brown and a bit scorched in spots. Serve immediately or later. It is great reheated and in lunches. 

* I have tried it with the skin on and skin removed. Alex and I like it better with the skin off, but when I am lazy I leave it on and remove it before I serve it/eat it.
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