Introduction: Blackened Seasoning

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Blackened seasoning is super delicious and so easy to make at home! It's a great pantry builder if you don't already have all these seasonings on hand, too. I've been messing around with this blackened seasoning recipe and trying to get it just right. I love it now, but I fully expect you to tweak it a little too! It's not overly spicy, so adding more cayenne will be great for heat-heads, and you might even want to omit a seasoning you're not crazy about.

  •     2 teaspoons ground paprika
  •     4 teaspoons dried leaf thyme
  •     2 teaspoons onion powder
  •     2 teaspoons garlic powder
  •     1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  •     2 teaspoons salt
  •     2 teaspoons black pepper
  •     1 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper, or to your taste
  •     1 teaspoon dried leaf oregano
  •     3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
  •     1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Combine all of these in a container you can store the seasoning in - a small tupperware container or a tiny glass jar. I'm using an old jam jar. Then just shake until well combined. This blackened seasoning makes enough for a few uses - I coated three huge chicken breasts and had lots left.

This seasoning makes wonderful chicken - we made sandwiches, but it would also be excellent cut up on a salad. :D And fried fish is great with it too. If you omit the sugar it's great for roasting veggies too - especially potatoes.

To make blackened chicken:
  1. Coat chicken breasts well in the blackened seasoning - you can see in the photos how much should go on. They should be nice and orange!
  2. Heat a pan (I prefer stainless for this, nonstick just doesn't give as good of a crust!) over medium heat - I was going at 5 on my gas range - with a thin layer of oil in it. Make sure you have enough oil that the bottom of the pan is coated, or it could cause sticking problems!
  3. Once the oil is nice and hot and shimmery, put in your chicken breasts. Don't crowd them or they won't get blackened!
  4. You'll need to leave the breasts alone for 7-8 minutes and then flip. Do not flip until they release themselves from the pan - that's how you know that side is nice and crispy. If you force them, you'll pull off the beautiful crust.
  5. Flip and cook for another 8 minutes on the other side.
  6. Turn down the heat a bit and keep flipping every now and then until they're cooked through. If you're using huge breasts, it could take 20-25 minutes. I used a probe thermometer to check - they need to be at 165 F.
  7. Let them rest for a few minutes and then eat!
Please note that I do not recommend you cook blackened chicken this way unless you are willing to clean up a very dirty stove afterwards. Also, make sure you have an exhaust fan or you might set off a smoke detector. :D

If you'd like to do it a nicer, not so messy way, blacken the chicken over a higher heat and finish in a 350 F oven. Or start in the oven and then blacken them. Regardless of how you cook them, they are delicious.
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