Roasted Fenugreek-Rubbed Chicken Drumsticks

roasted fenugreek chicken

I love cooking and experimenting with spices—they add so much flavor to recipes when used as a focal spice or in concert with others. I'm always discovering new spices by often just wandering down the aisles of Kalustyan's, a fantastic spice market in New York. One of my favorites includes coriander—its unique flavor adds a citrus flavor and aroma without using lemon. But recently I discovered a spice new to me—fenugreek, which comes in two forms, seeds and dried leaves.

Fenugreek is used both in its seed form and dried herb form in Indian, Eritrean, and Ethiopian cuisine. It lends a unique herbal quality and hint of bitter flavor that's quite intriguing. It also can be used in stews and curries to add flavor. It takes this dish of roasted chicken drumsticks to the next level, adding an exotic touch that you will love. I also use coriander to add a citrus note and paprika for a bit of sweetness and color.

A little fenugreek goes a long way in adding flavor—it brings this dish to life. Be sure to rub the dried leaves between your fingers before using, not only to crumble them into a powder but also to release the flavor. For a complete meal, serve the chicken with rice and cucumber raita.

Roasted Fenugreek-Rubbed Chicken Drumsticks

2 teaspoons dried fenugreek leaves
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
8 to 10 (about 2-1/2 pounds) chicken drumsticks
fine sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
olive oil
cilantro leaves, for garnish
lemon wedges, for serving
cucumber raita, recipe follows

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil.

Add drumsticks to pan. Season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with a little oil and rub to coat. Dust with spice mixture and pat chicken so spices adhere. Arrange drumsticks in two rows. Roast, turning halfway through, until tender and crisp, about 45 to 55 minutes. Garnish with cilantro leaves and serve with lemon wedges. Yield: 4 to 6 servings.


cucumber raita

Cucumber Raita

1 cup Greek yogurt
1 long English cucumber, cut lengthwise, seeded, and sliced
fine sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro

Combine yogurt and cucumber in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper. Stir in cumin and coriander. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour to allow flavors to blend. Yield: 4 servings.