Bourbon Chicken

I love Bourbon.  Something about the smell always reminds me of the South (Southern U.S. that is).  Bourbon also figured prominently in the last play I directed – “I Do, I Do” at the Desert Stages in Scottsdale Arizona.  It also figures prominently in this chicken dish, which smells, looks and tastes great, and is very easy to make.

  • 8 boneless skinless chicken thighs
  • 1 tbsp ground ginger
  • 4 oz soy sauce
  • 2 tbsp dried minced onion
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp Kentucky bourbon
  • ½ tsp garlic powder

Rinse and pat chicken dry and put thighs in a large zipper bag. Mix remaining ingredients except chicken together   Stir to fully dissolve the sugar.   Add marinade to the bag.   Seal the bag forcing out as much air as possible.  Massage the bag to evenly distribute marinade.  Refrigerate the bag overnight, occasionally turning the bag to evenly coat the chicken.

Remove bag from the fridge and preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  Line a large rimmed baking pan with foil and spray it with nonstick spray.  Drain the chicken, pouring the marinade into a small saucepan.  Put the sauce pan on the stove and bring the sauce to a boil.  While the chicken is baking, the sauce will reduce to about half its quantity and become thick and syrupy.  Turn the heat off when it reaches this stage.   

Pat the chicken with paper towels to remove excess liquid and lay the pieces ugly side up (the side that was closest to the bone)  in a single layer in the pan.  Do not let the pieces touch each other.  This will ensure even browning.  Bake the chicken for 10 minutes.

After ten minutes of baking, use a basting brush to baste the chicken with the reduced sauce from the sauce pan.  Using tongs, flip each piece of chicken over, brush it with more sauce and return it to the oven for another 10 minutes.

Turn the oven heat off.  Baste the chicken pieces with some more sauce and return the chicken to the oven for 5 minutes.  The residual heat will allow the sauce on top of the chicken to carmelize some more. 

Serve chicken on plates with a salad on the side.  Makes 4 servings.

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