Citrus Herb Chicken

I am extremely excited to be back to writing and cooking after all the work it took to update the blog. I can say that I have learned a lot and continue to learn as I continue on this blogging journey. I am grateful for my husband and family who provide unwavering support in this “hobby” of mine. I am one lucky lady!

So, back to the food which is always the star of the show. Citrus. Refreshing, bright, colorful, beautiful citrus. Citrus fruits are in season during the winter (unfortunately, not here in Michigan) and I am compelled to use them as often as possible for several very important reasons. One: it gives any dish a bright and fresh flavor; a welcome change from the traditional heavy winter comfort foods. Two: the colors are so irresistibly gorgeous after looking at white snow and gray skies for days on end. The bright yellow, orange, and green colors just make me happy inside and remind me of sunny, summer days. How’s that for a treatment for the seasonal blues?

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This marinade could easily be used for other types of meat such as turkey, pork chops, or beef.

Ingredients

  • 2 limes
  • 1 large orange
  • 1 large lemon
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2 tbsp fresh rosemary
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme
  • 1/4 c. olive oil
  • 2 bone-in, skin-on chicken breast
  • 6 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • salt/pepper, to taste

Note: You can substitute a cut-up whole chicken instead of the breasts/thighs.

Begin by using a grater to zest the fruit.

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Zest both limes, the orange, and the lemon. A lot of concentrated citrus flavor lives in the peel of the fruit; when zesting remove the color but not the white part underneath (which can be bitter). Add zest to a large zip top bag; this is where we will assemble the marinade.

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Next, cut the limes in half and juice directly into the zip top bag. Repeat this procedure with the lemon (being careful not to add the seeds) and the orange. It may be  helpful to juice the fruit over a small strainer that will catch the seeds.

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Peel the garlic cloves and mince; add to the marinade. Strip leaves of rosemary and thyme from their stems and chop finely to begin releasing their flavor. Add the fresh herbs to the marinade, then drizzle in olive oil.

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Season lightly with salt/pepper and use your fingers to smoosh, the technical cooking term, all the ingredients together.

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Add chicken to bag and seal tightly. Turn the bag several times to coat each piece of chicken with the marinade. Place bag in a casserole dish, just in case it leaks, and place in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours.

I separated the thighs and breasts into two separate baking dishes just in case they did not cook at the same time. Turns out, they did!

I separated the thighs and breasts into two separate baking dishes just in case they did not cook at the same time. Turns out, they did!

When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Place chicken in casserole dishes and drizzle with the remaining marinade from the bag. Place in oven and bake for 1 hour, or until the chicken is completely cooked through. The skin will become golden brown and crispy, yum!

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Let rest for 10 minutes and then serve! This chicken turned out so moist, so tender, and so delicious…it was an instant favorite! Enjoy!

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