Lemon and Miso Marinated Chicken Thighs
I rarely cook recipes from the newspaper. Perhaps because I don’t get a newspaper so just read now and then online for the top news bits. But somehow this article on “Breakaway Cooking”, using unfamiliar ingredients in familiar ways might be one definition, caught my attention. I’ve been having fun exploring our local 99 Ranch Market and being able to find miso and pickled plums, and more noodles than I know what to do with! The challenge of not always being able to read the labels adds to the exploration. Buying unfamiliar fruits and vegetables and then figuring out what to do with them is a fun challenge. And the produce prices at least are a great incentive!
So I made a few modifications, namely I had bone-in skin-on chicken thighs in the freezer so thawed those out. I did actually have white miso paste due to my recent trip to the aforementioned market although I hadn’t yet used it for miso soup, as I intended. So I left the skin on, because it seemed like would get good and crisp this way and I like skin. I just cooked an extra 5-10 minutes due to the bone in part. (I was going to cook another 5 minutes and check it but got distracted so it turned into 10. It was done by then!) He also called for a Meyer lemon but I used what I have growing on my trees. They were planted before I moved in so I’m not sure what they are. Not a Meyer though, but generally smaller than a Ponderosa (although I do get gargantuan ones now and then).
I was also fixing some asparagus from the farmer’s market so I tossed the spears with a bit of chopped garlic, olive oil, salt and pepper and then just added to the skillet as I put the chicken in the oven. I did pull it out a few minutes before the chicken as the spears were very thin.
Oh, I also cut his chicken in half so you could probably cut the marinade in half, although I didn’t.
- juice and zest of 1 lemon, separated
- 1 heaping Tbs white miso
- 1 tsp honey
- 2 chicken thighs
- olive oil
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1/4 cup Panko or regular bread crumbs
Mix together the lemon juice, miso and honey. Add the chicken and stir to coat. He recommends marinating a few hours but I just gave it about 45 minutes since this was an ad hoc dinner.
Preheat the oven to 400 F. (As an aside, I hate it when recipes start with preheating the oven and then tell you to marinate something a few hours!)
Heat a cast iron or other oven-proof skillet on the stove over medium heat and coat the bottom with oil.
Drain the marinade from the chicken, then salt and pepper each side, then coat with Panko (or regular) bread crumbs and press in a bit.
Place the chicken thighs into the hot skillet, skin side down and cook a few minutes. Then turn over and add the asparagus or some other vegetable that can cook in 2o minutes or so in the oven) to the side.
Place the pan in the oven and cook 25-30 minutes (or 15-20 minutes if you’re using boneless thighs as he suggests).
Flip the chicken over (skin side up), top with the lemon zest and serve.
I cooked this when I was home alone for dinner last night and saved one of the thighs to pack for my daughter’s lunch today. Added some rice and soy sauce, plus some sliced strawberries and a clementine. She came home wanting more for an after-school snack and was quite disappointed that I’d only cooked two thighs–so definitely a repeat recipe!