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Orange-oregano roast chicken, olive gremolata

Orange-oregano roast chicken, olive gremolata
Laura Edwards

With all the cookbooks that come out each year, repeating volumes filled with market-driven dishes prettily photographed in vintage cookwear on hardwood tabletops, it’s easy to overlook some of the best examples of the genre. This would be a shame, ... Read more

Total time: About 1 hour, plus marinating time | Serves 6

Gremolata

  • 7 ounces mixed green and black olives, pitted and finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 red chiles, seeded and finely sliced
  • Zest of 1 orange, removed with a zester
  • Leaves from 2 sprigs of oregano, coarsely chopped
  • ¹⁄3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
  • Squeeze of lemon juice

Step 1On a board, combine the olives, garlic, chiles, zest and oregano and finely chop them. Place the mixture in a bowl along with the oil, orange juice, vinegar and lemon juice. Set aside to give the flavors time to infuse. This makes about 1 ½ cups gremolata.

Orange-oregano roast chicken

  • 12 skin-on bone-in chicken thighs
  • Leaves from 1 bunch of oregano, chopped
  • 8 garlic cloves, crushed
  • Juice of 2 oranges and finely grated zest of 1, plus 2 small–medium oranges, preferably thin-skinned, cut into thin slices
  • ¹⁄3 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
  • Sea salt flakes and pepper
  • Granulated sugar

Step 1Trim the chicken thighs of scraggy bits of skin. Pierce the undersides with a sharp knife and put in a non-reactive dish. Add the oregano, garlic, orange juice and zest, ¼ cup of oil and the pepper. Mix with your hands, cover, and put in the fridge for a few hours (overnight is even better).

Step 2Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Remove the chicken from the marinade, shaking off any excess. Heat the remaining oil in a large ovenproof sauté pan or shallow cast-iron casserole large enough to fit the chicken in a single layer. Brown the chicken, in batches, on both sides, finishing skin-side up. Scatter with sea salt flakes and roast for 20 minutes.

Step 3Lay some of the orange slices under the chicken and the rest on top. Spoon the cooking juices over the oranges, then sprinkle a little sugar over the slices. Roast until the chicken and oranges are fully cooked, about 20 minutes more. Scatter the gremolata on top. Serve straight from the sauté pan or casserole.

Note: Adapted from a recipe in “Simple: Effortless Food, Big Flavors” by Diana Henry, who suggests serving the dish with a watercress salad and little potatoes roasted in olive oil or a rice pilaf.

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