Serious Eats: Recipes

Eat for Eight Bucks: Honey Mustard Chicken Legs

[Photograph: Robin Bellinger]

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2 whole chicken legs: $3.52
1 bunch radishes: $1.99
2 sweet potatoes: $1.77
1 lemon: $0.50

Pantry items: Olive oil, salt, pepper, honey, mustard, butter.

Total cost (for 2 portions): $7.78

When you get into the habit of eating beans, grains, and vegetables, you get used to planning around long simmering times and patiently enduring the endless washing, peeling, and chopping produce requires. I don't put meat at the center of my plate once a day or even once a week, so when I do I'm always a little shocked by how easy it can be. These flavorful honey mustard baked chicken legs take far less active time than even the simplest salad and will do much more to satisfy big (omnivorous) appetites. You could make it even simpler by skipping the marinade if necessary.

As far as vegetables go, baked sweet potatoes and a radish salad are at the no-fuss end of the difficulty spectrum. I bake sweet potatoes at 400 for about an hour; then I scoop the flesh out and beat it with a little butter and some salt and pepper. You can pour in the tasty pan juices from the chicken if you don't mind a little extra fat. For a simple radish salad, slice a bunch of radishes as thinly as possible and toss with the juice of half a lemon, two tablespoons of olive oil, salt, and pepper. If you do this a few hours in advance--perhaps when you marinate the chicken--the radishes will be pleasantly mellowed.

Honey Mustard Baked Chicken Legs

About the author: Robin Bellinger is a freelance editor and shameless cookie addict. She lives in San Francisco and blogs about what she feeds her husband and her daughter at home*economics.

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