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Pomegranate Glazed Chicken Drumsticks (c) 2012 La Domestique

Sweet and sour glazed chicken is a dish democrats and republicans can all agree on. Tuesday, November 6, our country will elect the next President of the United States of America. Many of us will gather, family and friends, to watch election coverage on television. There will be heated discussions over the dinner table and cheers (or tears) as results roll in. Pomegranate Glazed Chicken Drumsticks is a festive appetizer, perfect for serving a crowd. An economical finger food, drumsticks pair nicely with beer, cocktails, or a big bowl of party punch. Inspired by the technique from Giada De Laurentis’s Balsamic Chicken Drumettes, I created my own sweet and sticky glaze with the exotic flavor of pomegranate molasses. If you’ve never cooked with pomegranate molasses, it’s syrupy and tart, a reduced pomegranate juice found in the Middle Eastern section of large grocery stores. The combination of pomegranate molasses, orange juice, cinnamon, brown sugar, and garlic, makes for a deeply flavored, sweet, fruity, and gently spiced marinade that tenderizes and flavors the chicken, caramelizing deep golden brown and crisp in the oven.

This recipe is easy to throw together and mostly hands-off, which is great for entertaining guests. Simply marinate the chicken for a couple of hours, then roast it quickly in a blazing hot oven. Brush the caramelized drumsticks with extra sauce and sprinkle over pomegranate seeds for a festive and fruity finish. Pomegranate Glazed Chicken Drumsticks is a lip-smackingly good appetizer, guaranteed to be a hit at any celebration, from Election Day through the holiday season.

Remember, whatever the results on Election Day, we’ve all got something to celebrate: our freedom.

Pomegranate Glazed Chicken Drumsticks

serves 6 as an appetizer

Ingredients for Pomegranate Glazed Chicken Drumsticks (c) 2012 La Domestique

  • ¼ teaspoon sea salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
  • ½ cup pomegranate molasses
  • 3 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 12 skin-on chicken drumsticks
  • cooking spray or vegetable oil, for greasing the pan
  • Seeds from ½ a pomegranate

Make the marinade. In a medium bowl, stir together the salt, cinnamon, brown sugar, and orange juice. Whisk in the pomegranate molasses. Place the garlic cloves and chicken drumsticks in a 1-gallon plastic, re-sealable bag. Pour marinade into the bag. Push all the air out of the plastic bag and seal it. Put the bag of chicken into the refrigerator to marinate for 2 hours.

Cook the chicken. Heat the oven to 450°F. Line a baking sheet with foil and grease the foil with cooking spray or a teaspoon of vegetable oil to keep the chicken from sticking. Fit all twelve drumsticks on one large baking sheet with a little bit of space between each one. Roast the drumsticks for about 25 to 30 minutes, turning them once, until cooked through with an internal temperature of 160°F. The skin will be caramelized and dark.

While the drumsticks cook in the oven, make a sauce with the marinade. Remove the garlic cloves and pour the marinade into a small high-sided skillet. Bring to a boil (to destroy any bacteria), then turn down the heat and simmer until reduced and thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Pour the thickened sauce into a bowl.

Upon removing the cooked chicken from the oven, brush with the reserved sauce and place the drumsticks on a platter. Sprinkle the chicken with pomegranate seeds and serve warm.