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Southwestern Baked Chicken


8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

2 cups buttermilk

Butter, for preparing Dutch oven

2 cups panko breadcrumbs

1 teaspoon each: salt, paprika, seasoned salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

2 teaspoons chili powder

1 teaspoon each, toasted and ground: cumin seeds, coriander seeds

2 tablespoons melted butter


Place the chicken in a container; pour the buttermilk over chicken to cover it. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or overnight.

Thoroughly butter inside of a 10-inch Dutch oven; set aside. In a small bowl, mix the breadcrumbs with the spices. Dip each chicken thigh in breadcrumb mixture to coat evenly; place in Dutch oven.

Cover Dutch oven and settle it into a fire pit or charcoal grill. Cook, using 10 to 12 coals underneath pot and 12 to 14 coals on lid, for 45 to 50 minutes. Remove lid; brush chicken with the melted butter. Return lid to pot; increase temperature by heaping 10 more coals on lid. Bake chicken until tops are crisp and browned and meat is tender, for about 15 minutes.

(Alternatively, bake chicken in a conventional oven at 350 F for 45 to 50 minutes, increasing temperature to 400 F for final 15 minutes.)

Makes 4 servings.

— Recipe from George and Carolyn Dumler’s “Southwest Dutch Oven” (Gibbs Smith, $15.99)