Six O’Clock Solution: Tangy sumac chicken with onions, lemon wedges

In Praise of Home Cooking: Reasons and Recipes by Liana Krissoff is a good read — and the recipes work well, too.

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If you enjoy reading cookbooks as much as cooking from them, In Praise of Home Cooking: Reasons and Recipes by Liana Krissoff (Abrams/Canadian Manda Group, $33.50) will give you double the satisfaction.

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The Pittsburgh cookbook author provides more than 85 favourite recipes, interspersed with essays about food, cooking, how to make a pot lifter, sharpen a knife or make bread and why we develop certain food tastes.

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Reading its copiously illustrated pages is like sharing tips with a foodie friend on such topics as safe foraging, the proper way to brown meat, or how to make your own sauerkraut. Step-by-step drawings show you, for example, the correct way to measure flour, light a charcoal grill, drain pasta and use up pastry scraps. Her best-loved cookbook list is instructive. The book is a good read and the recipes work well, too.

Tangy sumac chicken

Serves 4

2 tablespoons (30 mL) fresh lemon juice, plus lemon wedges

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1½ teaspoons (7 mL) paprika

½ teaspoon (2 mL) ground cumin

Pinch ground cinnamon

1 to 1½ teaspoons (5 to 7 mL) Kosher or coarse salt or to taste

¼ cup (60 mL) plus 1 tablespoon (15 mL) olive oil

6 boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1 medium onion, sliced thickly

1 teaspoon (5 mL) sumac, or more to taste*

Fresh, chopped, flat-leaf parsley

*  Substitute ground coriander

In a large bowl, use a fork to whisk together the lemon juice, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, salt and ¼ cup (60 mL) of the oil.

Using a sharp knife or scissors, trim away globs of fat on chicken and dangling skin. Coat chicken on all sides in lemon mixture. Use a fork to poke a few holes in the chicken so the marinade penetrates the meat. Cover bowl and refrigerate for 2 to 4 hours.

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Have ready a rimmed baking sheet. With oven rack in the centre of the oven, preheat to 450 degrees F (230 C). Arrange chicken in a single layer along one side of the baking sheet. Spread onion slices on the other side and drizzle with the 1 tablespoon (15 mL) oil, then sprinkle with a little salt.

Roast in preheated oven for 25 minutes.

Turn broiler to high and broil chicken for 5 to 7 minutes, until chicken is lightly browned.

Remove pan from oven and use tongs to turn thighs over. Return pan to oven and broil for 5 minutes more, or until second side is browned and sizzling.

Sprinkle chicken with sumac and serve chicken and onions with the lemon wedges and a sprinkling of chopped parsley.

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