These tasty chicken drumsticks from The Noble Pig take some advanced planning and are a bit messy to make (envision hands covered in mayonnaise) but they are so worth the effort. The chicken marinates overnight in a buttermilk and lemon juice mixture ensuring that the chicken is super moist and flavorful. When combined with the crunchy panko and lemon zest coating this chicken is phenomenal. Yum.
CRUNCHY LEMONADE DRUMSTICKS
3 tablespoons grated lemon zest, divided
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/3 cup buttermilk
4 pounds skin on chicken drumsticks
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups panko breadcrumbs
1 teaspoons dried thyme
Pinch of cayenne pepper
1/4 cup mayonnaise (I use Miracle Whip)
- Combine 1 tablespoon of lemon zest and the lemon juice in a large resealable plastic container.
- Add 1 cup of water and the brown sugar and whisk to dissolve then add in the buttermilk.
- Pierce the chicken drumsticks all over with a fork then submerge them in the buttermilk mixture.
- Cover and refrigerate overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet and coat with non-stick cooking spray.
- Place the panko, thyme, 2 tablespoons of lemon zest, cayenne, salt and pepper in a large plastic Ziploc bag and shake to mix.
- Place the mayonnaise in a small bowl.
- Remove the chicken from the marinade and slather the mayonnaise on the chicken then add to the panko filled bag. You may need to do this is batches.
- Thoroughly coat the chicken with the panko crumbs then place on the prepared baking sheet.
- Bake until golden, about 35 minutes. Flip over and bake until browned and crisp, an additional 35 to 40 minutes.