Crispy Cheesy Basil Chicken Thighs

This is a food blog. This is a food blog because I didn’t feel like you would be charmed enough by my thoughts and writing to just read without colorful pictures of the food my family eats. This is a food blog because I read a lot of food blogs, I eat a lot of food, and I make a lot of food. I love food, and I like the structure and direction a food blog gives me.

But before I was a mom or a wife, before I had a reason to cook or care about food, I was a writer. In first grade I wrote and illustrated a story about a lonely porcupine. During recess of the Michigan winter months, I would sit silently in the hallway of my fifth grade class and write.

We had an assignment in sixth grade for a five page (minimum) creative story, and mine was something like forty pages long (1.25″ margins, 12 point Times New Romans, double spaced). It was so long that my printer ran out of ink before completing it, and every other line of the last five pages was so faint it was illegible. I turned it in like that, and my teacher, Mrs. Ricks, called me up to her desk after class a few days later. “Can you email me the file? I can’t read this! I already gave you an A, I just want to know the end.” I mumbled yes, fine, sigh, I’d get it to her. The thing was, I knew that the last five pages were not of the same quality of the first five pages. I had gotten bored with my own story and hastily concluded it. The ending was terrible, and I had secretly been relieved my printer half hid that. I didn’t deserve an A, and if she could read the last pages of my story, she would know it.

I was so embarrassed by the end of my story assignment that I stopped writing outside of school for a very long time. I started a story a couple years ago, but I found that I still don’t have the discipline to stay on the same story for more than five pages. Maybe one day I’ll think up a story that is captivating enough to hold my own attention for longer than a week.

Before that, though, I need to find my voice. The tone I use while writing changes by the day, depending on what I’m reading. One week it’s Shakespearean, and another week I feel like I can only write thoughts in 140 characters or less. As I get older, I get more confident that my voice will solidify…someday. And I’m actually quite certain that this blog is helping. My writing is more and more distinct from what I’m reading.

However, you may have noticed that my reading often informs my writing. I recently finished The Golden Gulag: Prisons, Surplus, Crisis and Opposition in Globalizing California and The Big House: Image and Reality of the American Prison. This led me to think about the relationship between social justice and parenting; hence, the topic of my last post, where, you might have noticed, “‘Leftover’ Salad” was not the main attraction.

Right now I don’t think I sound anything like Martyn Lloyd-Jones (pity). I’m reading Studies in the Sermon on the Mount, and I’d love to share some thoughts about that, possibly next week. At the moment I’d like to share this chicken.

When I made this chicken, I actually really wanted garlic bread. So the flavors of this chicken are garlicky, cheesy and basil-y. If you don’t like mayo, fear not, it does not taste like mayo. You might be able to sub the mayo for olive oil, but I don’t think you’ll get the fatty crispy outer layer. You also will not the get the fatty crispy out layer if you use skinless meat. I feel like that should be obvious, but I’ll go ahead and say it in case I have a reader who is new to cooking.

Crispy Cheesy Basil Chicken Thighs


6 Chicken Thighs, Bony and Skinful

1/4 Cup of Mayonnaise

2-4 Cloves of Garlic, Minced

1 Teaspoon of Dried Basil

1 Teaspoon of Salt

1/2 Cup of Freshly Shredded Parmesan Cheese


Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Arrange the chicken in a 9×13″ pan.

Mix together the mayo, garlic, dried basil and salt.

Spread the mayo mixture evenly over each thigh.

Bake for 30 minutes.

Sprinkle with Parmesan.

Bake for an additional 10 minutes.


Parmesan Garlic Chicken Thighs


One thought on “Crispy Cheesy Basil Chicken Thighs

  1. Looks AMAZING! Also, I love reading your blog, Sam… so deep and wonderful. Thanks for talking about these hard realities and mingling it with the sweet truth of Jesus. Can’t wait to read your thoughts on our homeboy Lloyd-Jones 🙂


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