I think there are two types of Thanksgiving eaters. The people who are there for the meat and the people who are there for the sides. I am, 100%, without a doubt, a side gal. Give me a full plate of carbs on Turkey Day and I will pass on the actual turkey every time. It’s really just taking up valuable tummy real estate. Don’t get me wrong, turkey is delicious and I will eat the hell out of it on Thanksgiving evening on a sandwich, but for the meal? Give me potatoes or give me death!
That’s why, when I was planning our Canadian Thanksgiving meal, I wanted a super flavorful main dish that wouldn’t be overshadowed by the sides (although, admittedly, the cornbread dressing was definitely the star of the show). This chicken dish definitely fit the bill.
If you’ve never used buttermilk as a marinade, you probably think this combo sounds mega weird, but I promise it’s a good one. The buttermilk makes the chicken incredibly moist and tender and adds a tiny touch of tang that is really addictive. Usually, you’ll find buttermilk marinades used before frying chicken, but it works equally as well with a roasted bird.
And you better believe, I made this into a sandwich on Thanksgiving night. With a little bit of mayo, it was the perfect snack before curling up with Babyface and Puppyface to watch TV. There may or may not have been a pumpkin beer involved as well.
Okay, there totally was.
Buttermilk Roasted Chicken with Garlic and Herbs
The longer the chicken marinades in the buttermilk, the more tender and tangy the end result will be. For best results, let it hang out in the marinade overnight in the fridge.
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 tablespoon maple syrup
- 5-6 leaves fresh sage
- 3-4 sprigs of thyme, leaves removed from stem
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 whole chicken, cut up
- In a food processor, combine the buttermilk, olive oil, garlic, syrup, sage, thyme, salt and pepper.
- Pulse until herbs and garlic are well chopped.
- Season chicken pieces liberally with salt and pepper.
- Place chicken pieces in a large zip-top bag or baking dish, pour over marinade. Toss to coat.
- Close bag or cover dish and refrigerate for at least 4 hours up to overnight.
- When ready to prepare, preheat oven to 375°.
- Remove chicken from marinade and shake off excess. Place chicken pieces, skin side up, in a baking dish.
- Bake for 30-35 minutes, or until chicken is cooked through and skin is brown and crispy.