Chicken is quite a staple in our house but then we do have my daughter Saskia’s birds on hand, and the difference a well-brought-up chook makes in flavour and texture is incredible. The great thing is that each state of Australia has wonderful producers and they need to be encouraged as it costs a lot more to grow out a free-range bird to full maturity.
The marinade here is definitely ‘finger-licking good’ in the true sense of those words and it adds wonderfully to the caramelisation of the skin. You’re a stronger person than me if you can peel that off before you eat.
- 6 x 230 g chicken thighs, skin on, bone in
- ⅓ cup (80 ml) extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt flakes
- roasted carrots, kale and hazelnuts, to serve
- 1 tbsp soy sauce
- finely grated zest of 1 lime
- 1 tbsp lime juice
- 1 tsp finely grated orange zest, plus extra to serve
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 clove garlic, finely grated
- 1 tbsp finely grated ginger
- 1 lemongrass stalk, pale end only, finely chopped
- 1 tsp finely grated turmeric
- 1 tsp raw honey
- sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Marinating time: 2-4 hours
To make the marinade, place all the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well combined.
Place the chicken in an airtight container, pour over the marinade, then place the lid on the container and shake well. Refrigerate for 2–4 hours.
Preheat the oven to 200°C (fan-forced).
Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Remove the chicken from the marinade and shake off the excess. Season with salt, then place half the chicken, skin-side down, in the pan and cook for 2 minutes on each side or until golden. Take care not to burn the marinade. Remove from the pan and place, skin-side up, and spaced well apart on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Repeat with the remaining chicken thighs. Transfer to the oven and bake for 4–5 minutes or until just cooked through. Remove from the oven and allow to rest in a warm place for 8–10 minutes. Scatter with extra orange zest and drizzle with any resting juices. Serve with the roasted carrots, kale and hazelnuts.
• Turmeric contains the polyphenol curcumin which has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, anti-cancer and anti-diabetes properties.
Recipe from Maggie’s Recipe for Life by Maggie Beer with Professor Ralph Martins (Simon & Schuster Australia, pb, $39.99). Photography © Dragan Radocaj. Read our chat with Maggie about eating for better brain health here.