Coca Cola chicken drumsticks are marinated in a combination of soda, brown sugar, ketchup, and fresh ginger for a sauce that’s sticky, sweet and yummy.
“It’s not soda, it’s not pop–it’s Coke, no matter what brand or flavor.”
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A word of advice if you show up thirsty in Mississippi – don’t ask for a pop. Don’t ask for a soda. Ask for a Coke. It doesn’t matter if you really want a Sprite or a Dr. Pepper. We’ll get to that later.
Think of it like this way: How often do you ask for a tissue to wipe your nose? Or lip balm for your chapped lips? No, you ask for a Kleenex and some Chap-Stick. In the South, Coke is more than just a brand. It’s an all encompassing term used to describe any carbonated, syrup-sweetened beverage.
Last week, cookbook author Martha Hall Foose visited my local library to do a reading from her newest book, A Southerly Course, and a book signing. Martha’s first cookbook, Screen Doors and Sweet Tea not only won a James Beard award, but it is one of my favorite cookbooks.
You may wonder how someone does a reading from a cookbook. No, it did not involve reading recipes aloud. Martha’s books are intertwined with lovely stories of the South. Stories so descriptive, that if I didn’t already live here I would want to pack up my things and move here. Something about her stories makes me want to kick off my shoes, wiggle my toes, and spend an afternoon in a hammock with a glass of lemonade.
I chose this recipe from A Southerly Course because it was marinated in Coke. Or as Martha refers to it in her book, “Co-Cola.” Either pronunciation is perfectly acceptable around here.
Coca-Cola Chicken Drumsticks
- 1 (8 ounce) bottle soda
- 1/4 cup diced onion
- 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 4 garlic cloves
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
- 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 4 pounds chicken drumsticks
- 1 cup chicken broth
- Mix together first 10 ingredients in a large bowl or resealable bag. Add chicken and toss to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, preferably up to 8 hours.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Remove chicken and reserve remaining marinade. Bring reserved marinade and chicken broth to a boil in a medium saucepan. Continue to boil for 15-20 minutes.
- Arrange drumsticks on a large baking sheet and bake for 45-55 minutes, occasionally basting with reserved marinade mixture, until the skin is brown and crisp and juices run clear.