Browned and crispy skin gives chicken mouthwatering flavor and, unfortunately, anywhere between 50 and 75 percent of its fat. That's why most health-conscious cooks remove the skin and trim any visible fat before cooking.
But that's often at the expense of flavor and moistness.
The good news is that leaving the skin on during cooking, then removing it before eating, doesn't add fat to the meat and helps produce chicken that is more moist and tender.
One caveat is that any seasonings or sauces you rub or drizzle onto the chicken before or during cooking will get tossed along with the skin. The best way to avoid that is to gently tuck seasonings under the skin.
If you still would prefer to remove the skin, a good alternative is to baste the chicken with a glaze during cooking.
This peanut butter-chutney barbecued chicken uses this approach. But because it is grilled, there is an added par-cooking step to ensure that the sweet glaze won't burn before the chicken is fully cooked.
The recipe calls for chicken thighs with the bones in, which add flavor and also help to keep the chicken moist. Thigh meat is quite succulent and tends to dry out less than breast meat, especially when grilled over high heat.
The sweet and savory glaze is made with jarred mango chutney, which adds spicy, vinegary notes to the smooth and salty peanut butter. Look for mango chutney with other condiments or in the international section at your market.
This exotic, yet simple-to-prepare dish is perfect for a Mother's Day dinner that will impress without stress. It also keeps Dad cooking in his comfort zone - at the grill. To complete the meal, serve with basmati rice and baby sweet peas and pearl onions.
Start to finish: 1 hour (30 minutes active)
1⁄4 cup mango chutney
1⁄4 cup peanut butter
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons white vinegar
12 bone-in chicken thighs, skin removed, trimmed of fat (about 41⁄2 pounds)
1⁄2 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Heat the oven to 375 F.
To make the sauce, chop any large chunks in the chutney (brands vary). In a medium bowl, whisk together the chutney, peanut butter, soy sauce and vinegar. Set aside.
Season the chicken thighs with salt and pepper, then place them on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat a gas grill to medium-high or prepare a charcoal fire.
Remove the chicken from the oven and brush with the peanut butter-chutney sauce. Grill the chicken, turning and basting frequently, until well browned and cooked through, about 10 minutes.
Nutrition information per serving (values are rounded to the nearest whole number): 331 calories; 127 calories from fat; 14 g fat (3 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 161 mg cholesterol; 8 g carbohydrate; 41 g protein; 1 g fiber; 955 mg sodium.