But skinless chicken breast are so versatile, so easy, and so very safe. I know how you feel. I was nervous about branching out too. In the near past, I too was skeptical of dark meat. It seemed weird. I had convinced myself that it was no good. However...everything changed in an instant when I noticed chicken thighs are about half the price of skinless chicken breast. Seriously...for half the price I can eat around a little chicken skin and bone.
After that moment, chicken thighs have played an important role in my kitchen. If you aren't quite ready to make the leap away from boneless, skinless chicken then take baby steps and at least give boneless, skinless chicken thighs a try. In retrospect, I have absolutely no idea why I was so snobby about my chicken. To be honest dark meat tastes way better. It has much more flavor, and it is less likely to dry out. For most recipes the chicken thigh has replace my old friend the chicken breast.
I especially love the skin on, bone in variety for roasting. In only a few minutes of work, I can create a mouth watering, comforting home cooked meal. In this rendition of roasted chicken thighs, I partnered my meat with tender and sweet roasted butternut squash. I must admit, I am really excited about this dinner. It is a Katy's kitchen first. I finally used a butternut squash. I was inspired by a wonderful roasted butternut squash that I ate just a few weeks ago at South Congress Cafe. I found them to be so delicious, I decided to over come my nervousness and cook one myself. It was actually really easy. I am thrilled to have this sweet, delicious, and nutrient food as part of my repertoire.
Its my hope that you consider chicken thighs and winter squash when designing healthy quick and affordable meals for your family. Its saved me money and time. Simple dinners like this are a perfect way to get nutrients into your family when time, money and energy are limited.
Oven Roasted Rosemary Chicken Thighs and Butternut Squash
1 pound bone in, skin on, chicken thighs
3 tablespoons of olive oil
Enough salt and pepper to dust the chicken
4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
3 sprigs of fresh thyme
1 medium butternut squash
2 tablespoons of brown sugar
2 tablespoons of butter
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place chicken in a medium sized casserole dish. Dust chicken with salt and pepper, and drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Place rosemary and thyme evenly on top of the chicken.
Meanwhile, scoop out seed of butternut squash and cut the flesh into large chunks. Place flesh on a rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle evenly with brown sugar and drop small cubes of the butter evenly on top of the squash.
Bake both until squash is soft and chicken in golden brown. Around 25 minutes
P.S. I would like to thank my good friend Viviana for all the wonderful photography tips she has so graciously shared. My food photography especially thanks you. Check out her great blog at http://heartspunimagery.typepad.com/heart_to_heart/2008/11/change.html