Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Brining and Baked Chicken Drumsticks

I've always been curious to see how much difference brining a chicken will make. Brining is the process of marinating something in a salt water solution. Supposedly, this makes the meat much juicier. Figured I would conduct a Dude's Test Kitchen test and do a side by side comparison of a brined baked chicken drumstick versus non-brined.

The result? Brining the chicken drumstick actually made minimal difference. Both chickens were extremely juicy, but the brined chicken was slightly plumper. Not noticeable and not worth the extra 1 hour to brine the meat. With that said, me thinks this may help when cooking a leaner piece like a chicken breast. That test will be conducted later...

Baked Chicken Drumsticks
These were shockingly awesome. Drumsticks were super crispy
and the meat was exploding with juiciness (not fat). Real great chicken flavor, not that generic cardboard chicken flavor that we're all used to. Used Bell and Evans chicken drumsticks, so I'm assuming that helped in the juiciness and flavor. Another test will be done comparing the Bell and Evans vs Tyson vs Perdue...


4 Chicken Drumsticks, skin on
1 Egg + tablespoon water beaten
1 cup all purpose flour
3 cups panko bread crumbs
2 tsp Goya Adobo Seasoning
Kosher Salt and Pepper
Olive Oil

1) Wash chicken and let it sit out to room temperature at least 15 minutes.
2) Set aside the flour, egg, and panko in three rectangular pans. Season the all purpose flour with salt and pepper liberally. Season the
egg with the Adobo.
3) Pre-heat oven and a baking tray to 350F.
4) Dip chicken in flour, shake off any excess, dip the chicken in the egg, and dip the chicken in the breadcrumbs. Make sure the drumstick is completely coated at each step. Very important to make sure you have complete coverage when you dip the breadcrumbs.
5) Add olive oil to the baking tray and place drumsticks on the tray. Drizzle olive oil over the drumsticks. The drumstick should sizzle as you place it on the hot tray.
6) Bake for 25 minutes. Then flip the drumsticks over, so the side touching the tray is facing up. The side that was down should get a nice brown crust.
7) Remove after 15 minutes and salt and pepper right away. Let it set for 10 minutes. Buono Appetito.

Side note - I used Adobo seasoning since I had it lying around and it worked out well. Any seasoning would work well - even salt and pepper alone. I left the skin on which definitely aided in the juiciness, but I think the results would still be good with the skin off. One caveat I have about the timings is I cooked this in my convection oven, which means it may take longer in a normal oven.


Lindsay said...

Hi there, I like the recipe. Just a hint, if you want your chicken to have a kick to them, add in Goya Hot Sauce ("Salsa Picante") to the egg before dipping in breadcrumbs. My boyfriend loves it. If you want, add some cayenne pepper to the breadcrumbs, also. YUM!

Aramis said...

Great idea. Kinda like a sauceless hot wing! Will definitely give it a try and let you know my results :)

Anonymous said...

did you check to make sure that the chicken wasn't already brined? i know that a lot of chicken comes brined already, and i dont know what the law is on stating it on the package... also doesn't make sense to me seeing how i always see cooking show telling you to brine chicken.

Aramis said...

Not 100% sure since this was an older post, but according to the post I used Bell and Evans chicken which is air chilled so it retains very little moisture. Brining basically makes the meat more moist by absorbing water in the meat, but when cooking with drumsticks skin on and bone in - it'll be super juicy any way since the drumsticks have more fat in the meat and the skin also adds more fat which keeps it juicy. Brining helps when you're dealing with meat with little fat - chicken breast, turkey, etc.