You must follow this recipe to-a-tee for it to be edible by humans. Not! On a busy weeknight, when the world is beating you up, get in your kitchen and roll with the punches. Be inspired by a recipe but make substitutions, use what’s in your freezer, fridge, and pantry. In this instance, we lean on the often neglected chicken thigh and the picked-at-peak-freshness frozen spinach. Go forage through your pantry for some interesting additions and necessary staples. Before you know it, you will have summoned the makings of a stellar weeknight meal, like this one.
Satisfy your sweet tooth with this easy-to-make recipe for Crispy Mustardy Chicken Thighs with Spinach.
1. Info for Crispy Mustardy Chicken Thighs with Spinach
- Cook Time: 15 min
- Total Time: 15 min
- Servings: 4
- Calories: 248.54 kcal
2. Ingredients for Crispy Mustardy Chicken Thighs with Spinach
- 3 skin-on chicken thighs
- 20 oz. frozen spinach (2 packages, like Cascadian Farms)
- 5 cloves garlic
- 1 teaspoon chili flakes
- 1 red onion
- mustard dregs (you know you have ‘em)
- ½ cup heavy cream
- 1 lemon (zest and juice)
- cracked pepper
- soy oil (a.k.a. veg oil)
- canola oil
- Equipment: skinny tongs for handling chicken, minimizing trips to the sink, big pan (for chicken), big high-sided pan (for spinach), microplane or box grater
- Grab a large pan for your chicken thighs and coat the bottom lightly with soy oil. We don’t need too much oil because the fat from the chicken skin will render down during cooking, resulting in some delightfully crispy skin. Add a generous amount of salt and cracked pepper to both sides of the chicken thighs. Add the chicken thighs to the pan, skin side down. Don’t burn yourself!
- Now grab a high sided pan for your spinach. Coat the pan with canola oil and place over heat. Smash and chop garlic cloves, adding a little salt, as the hot tip below explains. Add garlic to the heating oil and toss in a few chili flakes. Now we want to cut your onion into even slices. If onions make you cry, check out the hot tip below. Add the sliced onion to the pan with garlic and chili flakes. Now add your frozen spinach to the pan along with 1 cup boiling water, great tip when working with frozen veg. Now grab your mustard dregs and pour heavy cream straight into the bottle. Give it a good shake and pour right into the spinach.
- The chicken thighs have been cooking skin side down for about 9 minutes, it’s time we flip them. They are golden and oh so crispy.
- The spinach is spinaching nicely, now it’s time to generously grate nutmeg over the whole batch. Grab your lemon and zest over the spinach, first striking the lemon then moving to a new spot, repeat. Give the zested lemon a good squeeze over the spinach. Finally, season the spinach with salt and pepper.
- Grab a plate and pile a helping of mustardy spinach in the middle, adding some extra juice from the pan to act as a sauce for your chicken. Now place a crispy chicken thigh right on top. Gorgeous!
- Hot Tip: If you don’t have frozen spinach, use kale or chard or broccoli.
- Hot Tip: Don’t burn yourself when adding anything to hot oil. The best was to stay safe is to place the item in the pan away from you, so if oil were to splash it goes out the other side and not back at you.
- Hot Tip: When you chop garlic, add a bit of salt which acts as an abrasive to assist in further breaking down the clove.
- Hot Tip: To properly cut your onion, first cut off the top and bottom. Then cut the onion in half and take off the outer layer. Make thin slices, following the shape of the onion. Flip the onion half way through and finish slicing.
- Hot Tip: If onions make you cry, take a little wet napkin and put it in your mouth. You’ll look ridiculous, it’s ok. All the vapors from the onion are attracted to wetness, they’ll go straight to the napkin before hitting your eyes.
- Hot Tip: When working with frozen veg, a great way to melt them fast is to add boiling water.
- Hot Tip: If all you have left is mustard dregs, add a liquid to the bottle (like cream), shake it up, and add it to your dish or make a dressing.
- Hot Tip: When you see a green vegetable, think nutmeg, it makes green vegetables sing!