baked sweet and sour chicken

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this easy weeknight meal is low in carbohydrates and full of flavor.  the recipe was first published in the food network magazine of November 2012.  as with any recipe, substitutions are welcomed. 

i varied the preparation directions, since i opted not to brown the chicken in a skillet prior to baking.  so, i will give you an easier way to prepare this dish.

to make the recipe:  preheat the oven to 375 degrees.  place 3-4 bone-in chicken thighs in a ceramic baking dish.  season with pepper and bake for 45 minutes.  while the chicken is baking, prepare the sweet and sour sauce for the dish.

in a bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons ketchup, 2 tablespoons orange marmalade, 2 teaspoons low sodium soy sauce, 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar, red pepper flakes and minced ginger to taste.  reserve until later in the recipe.

meanwhile, chop peppers.  i chose orange and red bell peppers, but green would be fine as well.  i also chopped about 5 green onions into 3-inch slices, so they would be visible in the final dish.  in addition, i added one chopped white onion and some fresh pea pods. other vegetables could be added if desired.

when the chicken has baked for the 45 minutes, add the peppers and the sweet and sour sauce to the dish.  return to the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake until the chicken is done and the vegetables are warmed.  this may only take another 15 to 20 minutes.  the chicken should be 165 degrees on a meat thermometer.  

serve with rice if desired.

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