Oven Fried Chicken
recipe from Cook’s Illustrated
1 box plain Melba toast (about 5 ounces), processed to sand and pebble texture
2 large eggs
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon dried thyme
3/4 teaspoon table salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
4 chicken leg quarters
Separate the chicken into drumsticks and thighs. Remove the skin and pat dry.To make Melba toast crumbs, place the toasts in a heavy-duty plastic freezer bag, seal, and pound with a meat pounder or other heavy blunt object. Leave some crumbs the size of pebbles in the mixture. Drizzle vegetable oil over Melba toast crumbs in a shallow dish or pie plate; toss well to coat.
In a second shallow dish or pie plate, mix eggs, mustard, thyme, salt, pepper, oregano, garlic powder, and optional cayenne with a fork.
Working one piece at a time, coat chicken on both sides with egg mixture. Set chicken in Melba crumbs, sprinkle crumbs over chicken andpress a mix of sand and pebble crumbs onto the chicken to coat. Turn chicken over and repeat on other side, then shake off excess crumbs and place on rack. Bake until chicken is deep nutty brown and juices run clear, about 40 minutes.
* To make ahead/freezer meal – Prepare the chicken and coat completely. Once coated, place the chicken on a baking sheet in a single layer and freeze uncovered. Once frozen, place the chicken in a single layer inside a gallon sized freezer bag; seal and freeze. When ready to prepare, partially defrost chicken. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 400 degrees. Line sheet pan with foil and set large flat wire rack over sheet pan. Place chicken on the rack and bake in the preheated oven until chicken is deep nutty brown, about 40 minutes. Decrease the oven temperature to 350 and bake the chicken for an additional 10-15 minutes or until juices run clear.
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