How good does it sound to spend a weekend day at home cooking? Maybe friends and family are around — or maybe you’re alone, and they’ll come around to eat later. Either way, put on your favorite music, wear the most comfortable clothes you have, pour a mug of coffee or a glass of wine, and roast a chicken. Your house will be filled with the smells of herbs de provence and essence of orange. This sounds like a dreamy day! Doesn’t it to you?
Have you noticed this beautiful Mexican Sage growing everywhere right now? Well, you might notice it now that I’ve pointed it out. Here in Southern California, Mexican Sage is in full bloom. These purple flowers are vibrant, warm, and as soft as velvet. Ever heard of a comfort flower? I haven’t, but this could be one!
Herbs de Provence Orange Roasted Chicken is definitely a comfort food!
Prep Time: 10 minutes (plus 3 hours marinating time)
Cooking Time: 45 minutes
Zest of 5 Navel oranges, divided in half
Juice from about 5 Navel oranges (1 cup)
3 very finely minced garlic cloves
2 tablespoons finely chopped herb mixture (rosemary, sage, thyme, lavender, oregano), plus extra sprigs for garnish
1/4 cup olive oil
1 (3-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces, bone-in, skin-on
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened and room temperature
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 Navel orange, cut into slices for garnish
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine half of the orange zest with the orange juice, garlic, herbs, and olive oil. (Set aside the remaining zest for later.) Stir to combine and pour into a very large zip-lock bag. Add the chicken pieces and move them around to ensure they’re all coated with the marinade. Seal the bag, removing as much air as possible from it. Place this bag into a bowl (in case it leaks) and then into the refrigerator to marinate for at least 3 hours and up to overnight.
When you are ready to roast, preheat the oven to 375 degrees F and remove the chicken from the refrigerator.
In a tiny bowl, combine the softened butter with the paprika and the remaining orange zest. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Remove the chicken pieces from the bag (keep the marinade in the bag!) and place them in a baking dish that’s approximately 9 X 13 X 2-inches. Season both sides of the chicken with salt and pepper and then use your hands to rub the butter mixture under the skin of each piece and on top. Now pour the marinade over all of the chicken and put it in the preheated oven.
Roast the chicken just until it’s cooked through, about 30 to 45 minutes. Use a spoon to baste the chicken. Cut into a piece if you’re not sure if it’s done — the meat should be tender, juicy and the skin should be browned and crispy.
Let the chicken sit for at least 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with slices of orange and reserved fresh herbs.
If the chicken is cooked through, but the skin hasn’t browned, place the dish under the broiler for about 1 minute. Conversely, if you notice the skin becoming too dark well before the chicken is cooked, cover it loosely with foil.
You can use any oranges you’d like — I prefer Navel because they’re consistently super juicy and seedless!