Sunday, March 9, 2008

March 9: Glazed Blueberry Chicken

What a craptastically cold, wintery, yucky weekend. Kimberly won't shush her sassy mouth about how great a snow day is; it's March and I am frankly over it. It was cold and windy and grey all weekend and we had a lot to do, so instead of curling up on the couch with hot chocolate, we spent the morning trekking back and forth through a wailing, freezing, miserable wind across the parking lot between a Pep Boy's store and Borders Bookstore while waiting for new tires to be put on our car.

I am an Upper-Midwest girl, born and raised an hour from the eastern shore of Lake Michigan. That particular area of the state of Michigan is mostly farmland; most of the farmland is blueberries. My husband's parents moved to that particular area maybe 10 years ago; their home is surrounded on three sides by blueberry farms and on the last side by a small inland lake. It's typical of that area of the state. The best thing about their house is that through most of the second two-thirds of the summer, the unmistakable smell of blueberries is in the air round the clock.

Oh, man. I could really stand a big taste of summer right now, and this dish is just the thing that would do it for me. It comes from The Silver Palate Cookbook, which is, as I've said before, sort of my food bible. As I've mentioned, Julee Rosso, one of the authors, is from (and still lives) in the same area of Michigan that I've just described. I'm guessing that right about now, Ms. Rosso is sniffing the cold, damp, March Michigan air, thick with the smell of snow, and missing the smell of blueberries ripening under a July sun.

Serves 2-4.

Glazed Blueberry Chicken

1/2 cup blueberry vinegar
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 chicken, quartered
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/3 cup blueberry chutney or preserves
1 tablespoon chopped fresh Italian parsley, for garnish

Combine the blueberry vinegar and thyme in a large bowl. Add the chicken, turn to coat with the marinade, and marinate for 2 hours, turning occasionally.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.

Arrange the chicken pieces, skin side up, in a baking pan, reserving the marinade. Season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper and coat it lightly with the blueberry chutney or preserves.

Bake the chicken on the center rack of the oven until it is cooked through, about 1 hour, basting occasionally with the marinade. Do not baste in the last 15 minutes of baking.

Transfer the chicken to a serving platter. Serve immediately or at room temperature, sprinkled with parsley.

1 comment:

Kimberly said...

Hey, it's Kentucky. We take our snow when we can get it.