Brussels sprouts, oh how I love thee. It’s taken us a long time to get here, but I’m so glad we did.
When I was a kid, I was fairly certain Brussels sprouts were evil. These were clearly tiny cabbages made of nightmares, sent here to earth by aliens in order to slowly poison us humans (I’ve always has a slight flare for the dramatic). It’s not that my parents were forcing me to eat them. Quite the contrary. We never ate sprouts at home, ever. I think my parents were also skeptical that these lil’ veggies weren’t indeed just the devil neatly disguised in a tiny cabbage suit. If my mom (the Lima Bean Pusher) was skeptical of a vegetable, I was pretty sure it must be heinous. The only time I had fully experienced the Brussels sprout was through a friend. I was staying the night at friends house, and her mother insisted I eat my vegetables before I left the table. I thought, sure. Fine. I love veggies. This should be no big deal. And, then it happened. A slotted spoon emerged from a pot of lightly stained green liquid. A mushy pile of lifeless sprouts made a sad little mountain on my plate. These sprouts were boiled to disaster. They were bitter and mushy. I had entered into my own nightmare, and the only way out was with hasty large bites and a lot of water. Awful.
I didn’t try a sprout again until I was twenty-seven years old. It turns out they are delicious. I can’t get enough of ’em. It turns out that they are only terrible when boiled within an inch of their life and then forced into your mouth. I’m probably adding a bit of drama to the story, but you know, that’s how I remember it. 😉
On another note… I’ve never had to be convinced to eat crispy chicken, because–DELICIOUS.
Now, let’s talk about this dish. First of all, it’s a one pan situation. I love a one-pan-one-pot-one-dish-to-clean wonder, don’t you? In this case we’re using a trusty cast iron skillet. I love this thing. You can easily transfer it from stove-top to oven. This is how I got that bangin’ crispy chicken skin. Who doesn’t like crispy chicken skin?! Whole chicken legs meet coconut oil. Crispiness ensues in this cast iron magic.
Crispy chicken, meet sprouts. Ya’ll get comfy. We’re gonna put you in the oven.
And, BAM! Sprinkle it with a little bit of pecorino or parmesan if you wish. Surprise your husband with a totally gourmet (but super EASY) weekend lunch. That’s what I did. He thought it was, and I quote, “…the most delicious, gourmet lunch I’ve had in a long time. You’re a Dreamweaver.” This is coming from a man who reliably packs a triple decker PB&J for lunch, so he totally knows the market on fancy. Gosh, I love him. He also did the dishes. He washed the heck out of that singular pan! One-pan recipes= the best. SO EASY!
Enjoy, Friends! xo
- 2 whole chicken legs (skin on & bone in)
- 1 stalk of Brussels sprouts, stemmed and chopped
- 1 generous tbs of coconut oil
- salt, pepper & granulated garlic
- 1 tbs olive oil, for sprouts
- Juice of 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup chicken stock
- Pecorino or Parmesan cheese to garnish (optional)
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.
- Wash, prep, de-stem and halve all of your Brussels sprouts.
- Toss them in a bowl with your olive oil and a pinch or two of salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Season to your taste.
- Wash your chicken legs and pat them dry.
- Liberally season both sides of your legs with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. Set aside.
- Heat up your coconut oil in your cast iron skillet until hot. To test, flick a drop of water into the oil. It should hiss and sizzle.
- Once your oil is heated up, add your chicken legs to the pan face down.
- Allow them to sit there and get crispy. This will take several minutes. Don't move them, even if you are tempted. Mine crisped up in 6-8 minutes.
- Once the first side is crispy, flip your chicken legs over and crisp up the other side.
- When both sides of the chicken are crisped up, add in your Brussels sprouts to the pan along with your chicken broth and lemon juice. Stir.
- Place your pan in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear.
- Garnish with some freshly grated Pecornio or Parmesan cheese and serve. If you are eating Paleo this step can be skipped, and it will still be super tasty.