I didn't mean to do another herb blend so soon, but this one is SO good, and I ran out of it - again - and had to make another batch, so I grabbed the camera and started measuring.
Besides, this is nothing like the chili seasoning!
I'm pretty sure this started as 'Roast Sticky Chicken' or something similar, but I didn't like the baking method (not hot enough for me to be certain that we won't get food poisoning) and probably didn't have an ingredient or two. And then, Mom gave me some smoked paprika, so I've strayed a bit from that original recipe. That happens a lot around here - it's genetic. (Right, Mom?)
Here is almost everything you need. I forgot to put the salt canister in the photo.
So when you look at that pile of herbs and spices, the idea of mixing up a big batch makes a lot of sense, doesn't it? Because then, you get all this stuff out once, make your blend, and then just get out one little container each time after that.
Here is the recipe:
Ten Things Farm's Herbed Chicken Goodness
2 T salt
2 T seasoning salt - or just use regular salt if you don't have this
2 T paprika - smoked paprika if you have it
1 T onion powder
1 T dried thyme
1 1/2 T pepper
1/2 T cayenne pepper
1/2 T garlic powder
Mix it all up. Put it in a container and label. That's it! The first time you make it, you might want to use lower case t's - teaspoons - instead of capital T's (tablespoons). That will give you enough to coat 2-3 chickens and see if you like it. Once you decide that you like it, you can make the big batch! I store it in a previously emptied spice container, right in with my spices. I should show you my spice cabinet one of these days!
* * *
I only buy whole chickens, because they cost a lot less than parts. I almost always cut them up (because they cook faster and are easier to serve), which give me plenty of chicken cutting practice. Either is fine for this blend, though. If you have a whole bird, rinse it and dry it, sprinkle it inside and out and roast accordingly (please, at least 350 degrees for safety).
I take the speedy route. I spray my glass pan with nonstick spray, then sprinkle in a layer of Herbed Chicken Goodness. Not that you need to see a pan with nonstick spray and herbs in it, but since I was goofy enough to take the photo...
...there you go. Next, I put my cut-up chicken pieces in the pan. I tell myself there is an art to this - put the wings in the middle because they are little and cook faster, put the thicker pieces around the edges so they get more heat, put the thick part of the leg 'out' and the handle part 'in' - that way, it all evens out. That is my theory, and it works for me. Oh, and the other thing I do is cut breast pieces in half, cross-wise. They are just so, so big, and no one here will eat a whole one, so this way we get more pieces that are similar in size, which I think helps with cooking time and portions. It's not a standard cut - there is not an easy joint there or a specific place, so it means a lot of fussing (and knife sharpening), but that's why in this next picture, the pieces look 'different'.
And as you can see, once I put the pieces in there, I sprinkle them with more Herbed Chicken Goodness. I cover the whole thing during the first part of baking (a cookie sheet will save foil and works well) and bake at 375 for about 30 minutes, then take off the cookie sheet so the pieces can brown a bit - this takes another 15 minutes or so. (And since the oven is on, why not pop in a pan of corn bread?) I use a thermometer to check for safe temps, and then, we eat.
Apologies, but I neglected to take a photo of the golden-brown, herb-encrusted final product. We were hungry.
That is all I do, and the chicken is moist and tasty every time. If you don't eat the skin, you can lift it up and put the herbs underneath the skin. I do that sometimes, because the skin will keep the chicken from getting dry. There is usually some really yummy 'juice' in the pan that is a great start for chicken soup, too!
I hope you like this one - it is one of our favorites, and making it at home means we can control the ingredients and save some money at the same time.
-Laura at TenThingsFarm