For awhile there, my freelance writing business was booming. In fact, it was so big that I ended up letting go of a few lower paying clients. But this summer, one of my clients cut my workload (and my pay) in half. At first, it was kind of an abstract this sucks kind of thing.
But this month is when it really hit me. My income was substantially reduced, and suddenly I need to budget really well again. That means no more trips for after-school lattes for me and cake pops for the kids. That means using coupons again and paying attention to the sales flyers. That means seeking out work and making due in the meantime. (Anyone looking for a recipe developer/journalist/writer/blogger?)
As a result, I’ve been looking to less-expensive meals that are both easy and meet our expectation for really delicious dinners. Chicken drumsticks are a great budget-stretching meat to have in the rotation. Not to be confused with the mini ones that are a popular game day food, chicken drumsticks are larger and meatier. Two pounds of drumsticks with a couple of sides is perfect for my family, though you might want to go to three pounds if you are big eaters. The glaze recipe could be stretched to glaze another pound of drumsticks — or it’s easy to make a little extra.
These Baked Sticky Orange Chicken Drumsticks are delicious. They go perfectly with Kale and Bacon Fried Rice and a salad. And it can all be ready in under 30 minutes — totally easy too.
Also see Crunchy Oven-Fried Chicken Drumsticks.
I came up with this recipe after spying a similar one in an old food magazine. The original recipe from Every Day Food called for basting with marmalade only. However, I find marmalade to be too tart for our tastes. But combining the marmalade with soy sauce and rice vinegar, the sharp tartness is toned down and a richness is added without losing the orange flavor. The reaction was huge — everyone loved the sticky coating.
Do you have to watch your food budget too? How do you do it?
Baked Sticky Orange Drumsticks
adapted heavily from Every Day Food, April 2009
2 lbs chicken drumsticks (5-6)
kosher salt and ground black pepper
1/3 cup orange marmalade
1 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
Preheat oven to 475 degrees. Line a baking sheet with nonstick aluminum foil.
Rinse and pat dry the chicken. Then, sprinkle generously with salt and pepper all over. Arrange on the baking sheet (don’t let the pieces touch).
Bake for 10 minutes.
While the chicken is baking, whisk together the marmalade, soy sauce and rice vinegar. Pull the chicken out and baste with 1/2 of the marmalade mixture. Return to the oven and bake for another 10 minutes.
Take the chicken out again and baste with the remaining marmalade mixture. Return to the oven and bake for 5 minutes more.
Let cool for 10 minutes before enjoying.
About the Author (Author Profile)Sarah W. Caron is a freelance writer, editor and recipe developer. Her work has appeared in countless online and print publications including iVillage, BELLA NYC Magazine, Yum for Kids magazine and more. She lives in Connecticut with her two kids, two beagles and husband.
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