This healthy and delicious recipe is practically a one-pot dinner; just add a dish of quinoa, rice or buttered noodles, or how about a side of creamy risotto? For a change of pace, any poultry will do in place of chicken. This is a flexible and forgiving recipe; we made it with six pieces of chicken, but the recipe can be expanded very easily—bigger pan, more kale, and as much chicken as you need for your crowd.
Should you cook your chicken with the skin on or off? Cooking chicken with the skin adds flavour and moisture to the meat, resulting in a juicier and more succulent dish. The skin contains fat that melts during cooking, basting the meat and keeping it moist. Additionally, cooking chicken with the skin on can help to protect the meat from overcooking or drying out, as the skin acts as a natural barrier that prevents moisture loss. The skin also provides a crispy and flavourful texture, which is highly sought after by many chicken lovers. It’s important to note though that the skin can also add additional calories and fat to the dish, so be mindful of portion sizes and balance your diet.
Serves up to 6
About 2 tbsp butter
1 large bunch kale, ribbed and chopped (about 8 cups)
2 apples, cored and quartered
1 large red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp sea salt, divided
1/2 tsp pepper, divided
3 tbsp Dijon-style mustard
2 tbsp maple syrup
6 chicken legs, thighs or breast
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup apple cider or chicken stock
Preheat oven to 400°F.
Liberally grease oven-proof casserole or roasting pan with butter; set aside.
To prepare kale, strip leafy parts from stem. Finely chop stems and chiffonade or cut leafy parts into thick ribbons.
In roasting pan, add kale, apple and onions and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste, about 1/4 tsp of each.
In large bowl, stir mustard, maple syrup, olive oil, and remaining salt and pepper until combined. Add chicken pieces and toss to coat evenly; arrange chicken on top of kale mixture.
In mustard bowl (there should be some maple-mustard residue worth saving!), stir in cider or chicken stock. Pour into roasting pan of kale and chicken.
Roast, uncovered, until kale has reduced, chicken is golden, or when meat thermometer inserted into thickest part of chicken reads 165°F (74°C), about 30 to 35 minutes.
From Hudson, Quebec, now living in Port Hope, Ontario, Signe is a restaurant chef-turned-writer who tells award-winning stories and creates delicious recipes for LCBO’s Food & Drink, Manna Pro Hearty Homestead, The Harvest Commission, and Today’s Parent; she published her first book – Happy Hens & Fresh Eggs; Keeping Chickens in the Kitchen Garden with 100 Recipes – in 2015.