Oven-Fried "Yogurt" Chicken - Easy

Oven-fried chicken is so delicious, I thought I'd try a variation of a recipe posted a few years back.

Last time it was "buttermilk" chicken, where soy milk plus lemon juice equals buttermilk substitute.  But it's not thick and creamy like the real thing.  So I figured ... why not try marinating with thick and creamy parve yogurt instead?

Except there didn't seem to be a true non-dairy yogurt available at my local supermarket.  The Try-n-Save carried only one brand that, while labeled non-dairy, also sported a dairy hechsher (certification).

Until last week, when I spotted a new (to me) yogurt that was truly free of dairy cooties.

Pretend that the container on the right also says peach.

I would have preferred plain, but beggars can't be choosy.  Back in my distant past when I was a wee child, my mom would occasionally purchase those new-fangled frozen fried chicken dinners, the ones that included a tiny cup of peaches.  Being a kid, I'd eat the fruit first, slopping its syrup over the chicken.  Which made the chicken taste awesome.  So I reasoned that peach-flavored yogurt would make the chicken taste just peachy. And maybe the flavoring might mask the very distinctive soy taste. Um, no.

I'll just be polite and say that I don't care much for soy yogurt (of any flavor) straight out of the container.  But to be fair, I can't stand drinking real dairy buttermilk straight either.  Some things are just better as one of many ingredients in a recipe. 

Speaking of one of many, schug is a middle-eastern mixture of many different spices (depending upon brand or homemade concoction), with more spicy flavor than spicy heat.  You can substitute with crushed red pepper, or omit completely if, to you, even cinnamon burns your tongue.

I think the chicken tastes better if marinated most of the day. But sometimes I don't have my act together in the morning (or in the afternoon, for that matter).   So on those days of the week (which usually end in a "y") I glop the yogurt marinade onto the chicken, then immediately continue with the rest of the recipe.

Oven-Fried "Yogurt" Chicken
Yield: 4 servings

2 (6 oz.) cartons peach soy (or any dairy-free) yogurt
2 Tbl. fresh lemon juice
2 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. coarsely ground black pepper
1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 whole chicken, cut into eighths
 1 cup panko crumbs
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 Tbl. dried parsley
1/2 tsp. schug or crushed red pepper (optional)

Combine the yogurt, lemon juice paprika, salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper in a 1 quart bowl and set aside.

Remove most, but not all the skin from the chicken (so you won't feel totally deprived) and place in a high-rimmed dish. Spread the yogurt mixture over the chicken, turning the pieces as necessary to make sure they are completely coated.  If not baking right away, cover and refrigerate 4 to 8 hours.

Preheat oven to 375F.  Lightly spray a large shallow-rimmed baking pan with cooking spray.  Line with parchment paper, then spray parchment; set aside.   In a medium bowl, combine panko crumbs, garlic powder, parsley and schug.

Remove chicken parts from marinade, one piece at a time, and coat with crumb mixture.  Place on prepared baking pan in a single layer.  Spritz chicken lightly with cooking spray.

Bake for 45 minutes or until coating is golden brown and juices run clear when one of the breast pieces is pierced with the tip of a knife.

Forgot the Cole slaw.  Still in the fridge as of today.

Serve with mashed potatoes and your favorite veggie.  Cole slaw optional.


Abbe Odenwalder said…
Love the seasoning in this!

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