Ethiopian-Style Chicken Legs


Berbere, a fiery spice paste, is a staple of Ethiopian cooking. Here, the chicken is marinated in the paste, giving it an assertive Ethiopian-style flavor and color. The chicken legs are delicious served hot or cold, making them perfect for picnics or party snacking. Thighs, wings, or breasts could be substituted for the legs, if you wish.


1/4 cup hot Hungarian paprika
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1/2 tablespoon dry mustard powder
1/2 tablespoon tumeric
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
1/2 teaspoon gound sinnamon
1/3 cup red wine
2 tablespoons orange juice
24 chicken legs


Place all of the berbere spices in a skillet, preferably nonstick, over low heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the spices turn fragrant and are hot to the touch. Add the red wine, and stir to make a paste. Remove the pan from the stove and add the orange juice and oil, stirring to blend.

Dry the chicken legs with paper towels. Using your hands or a brush, liberally coat the chicken with the berbere. Transfer the chicken to a plastic zipper bag or to a baking pan, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight or up to 48 hours.

Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 375 degrees F.

Arrange the chicken legs on a rimmed baking sheet so that the pieces don't touch one another.

Bake until the chicken is cooked through, turning the legs once during cooking. The internal temperature should reach 170 degrees F; cooking time will vary depending on the size of your chicken pieces.

Serve hot, or let cool and store, covered, in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.


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