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I seared some chicken thighs in the oven (400f, top position with some olive oil and plenty kosher salt) and waited until the skin became golden brown (and thus seared) instead they came out like this:

enter image description here

The skin was dry, thin as paper, and it had an unpleasant texture of of ash. It raised 2 questions:

  1. How to prevent ashy, dry paper texture skin from forming.
  2. Why does it happen?
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    can you please add some more details, like: What type of chicken, (the fat content varies by type), the cooking duration, was the texture for all areas or only in the blistered area in picture, was the tray stationary the whole time or did you move it around. – Ron Jan 3 '17 at 1:22
  • @Ron They don't label chicken types where I live. I can't recall the cooking duration. The skin was papery on the parts of the chicken that were more exposed to the top, and the skin that was closer to the bottom was not as dry. I did not move it around as it cooked. What causes this dry skin? – Bar Akiva Jan 3 '17 at 8:47
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    couple of possibilities: 1) If the chicken is too lean, the skin has very little fat. Foe example, regular, cheap chicken will have more fat than a "pasture raised" or matured chicken. 2) The regular ovens are bad in temperature maintenance, and hot-and-cold spots of 30 degree F difference is common. So the blistered skin can be from a hot zone. moving the tray couple of times helps, as each piece moves around in (possible) hot/cold zones. 3) if you are cooking till the meat is cooked (and skin overcooks), one way is to loosely cover the pieces in aluminium foil so the skins cook slower. – Ron Jan 3 '17 at 9:02
  • @Ron I thought skin cooks slower than meat - no? – Bar Akiva Jan 3 '17 at 9:27

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