Roasted Orange Chicken
Whole tangerines, peel and all, roast alongside chicken in a sweetened soy sauce that thickens into a glaze and lacquers the bird. The fruit wedges soften in the syrupy sauce while infusing it with their floral bittersweetness. Reminiscent of savory Cantonese soy sauce chicken and tangy American Chinese orange chicken, this dish also combines the warmth of ginger with the bit of heat from ground hot chiles. You can eat the tangerine wedges along with the chicken, which is delicious with its sauce over steamed rice or boiled noodles. Serve with stir-fried brussels sprouts or bok choy.
- Serves: 4 persons
- 5small tangerines or clementines
- ½packed cup dark brown sugar
- ¼cup soy sauce
- 1 ½teaspoons rice vinegar or distilled white vinegar
- 1teaspoon ground cayenne or other hot red ground chile
- 1(4-pound) whole chicken
- Salt and black pepper
- 8slices peeled fresh ginger
Step 1Heat oven to 400 degrees.
Step 2Squeeze 1/4 cup juice from 2 to 3 tangerines into a small bowl; reserve the spent peels. Cut the remaining tangerines into wedges with their peels intact, and set aside. Add the brown sugar, soy sauce, vinegar and cayenne to the tangerine juice and whisk until the sugar dissolves.
Step 3Generously season the chicken inside and out with salt and pepper. Tuck the wingtips behind the body. Stuff the tangerine peels and 6 ginger slices into the cavity, then tie the legs together using kitchen twine. Place in a large ovenproof skillet, and scatter the tangerine wedges and remaining 2 slices ginger around the chicken.
Step 4Slowly pour the juice mixture all over the chicken, then slide the skillet into the oven. Roast for 30 minutes.
Step 5Using a large spoon or baster, quickly and carefully coat the chicken with the pan sauce. Continue roasting, basting every 10 minutes, until the chicken is browned and cooked through, 20 to 30 minutes longer. An instant-read thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the breast should register 155 degrees and, in the leg, 170 degrees. The chicken will continue to cook while it rests.
Step 6Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let rest for about 5 minutes. If the pan sauce isn’t already syrupy, bring it to a boil over medium-high heat on the stovetop. Be sure to wear oven mitts or use a kitchen towel to hold the skillet (the handle is hot). Cook, stirring occasionally, until the bubbles grow larger and paler brown, and the sauce is the consistency of syrup, about 5 minutes. Discard the ginger.
Step 7Serve the chicken whole or carved with the glaze poured all over the meat. Arrange the tangerine wedges from the pan around the bird. You can eat them, if you’d like.