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Originally published Tuesday, October 9, 2012 at 3:02 PM

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Recipe: Panko-Crusted Deviled Chicken

This is a dressed-up version of a favorite recipe.

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Deviled chicken was one of my mom's standbys. Chicken parts were smeared with Dijon-style mustard and broiled. It made for delicious skin, but the meat didn't have much flavor. My modern-day makeover gets rid of the skin. To keep the chicken moist and flavorful, I soak it in a combination of yogurt and mustard, mixing Indian methods with French seasoning. Then I coat it in panko breadcrumbs and add a spritz of nonstick cooking-oil spray. After baking, the chicken pieces get a brief trip under the broiler to brown the crumbs.

There's enough mustard in the marinade to be interesting but not overpowering. If you like your chicken mustardy, double the amount called for here. The same applies to the cayenne pepper.

The chicken pieces need to be refrigerated in the marinade for 8 to 12 hours. — From Stephanie Witt Sedgwick, The Washington Post

8 small or 4 large servings

1 cup nonfat plain yogurt

2 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard, or more to taste (see headnote)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon sweet paprika

1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or more to taste (see previous note)

Eight 4-ounce boneless, skinless chicken-breast halves (may substitute skinless, bone-in chicken thighs or legs)

2 cups panko breadcrumbs

Nonstick cooking oil spray

1. Whisk together the yogurt, mustard, salt, pepper, paprika and cayenne pepper in a large bowl until smooth and well combined. Add the chicken-breast halves; turn to coat evenly. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 8 to 12 hours.

2. When ready to cook, position an oven rack in the lower third of the oven and a second rack just below the broiler. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line 1 large or 2 small rimmed baking sheets with aluminum foil. Spray the foil with nonstick cooking-oil spray.

3. Place the panko in a shallow dish. Working with one piece of chicken at a time, remove the chicken from the marinade (it should be well coated) and place the chicken pieces in the panko. Cover with panko, patting and moving the crumbs around so each piece of chicken is coated. Transfer the chicken to the prepared baking sheet(s). Repeat with the remaining pieces of chicken. Discard any remaining crumbs and leftover marinade. Lightly spray the top of each chicken piece with nonstick cooking-oil spray.

4. Bake on the lower oven rack for 25 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the chicken registers 160 degrees; then set the broiler to high and transfer the sheet(s) to the higher rack, about 4 inches below the heating element. Broil for 2 to 3 minutes, until the crumbs are nicely browned and the pieces reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees. Let the chicken rest for at least 5 minutes before serving.

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