I recently got Melissa Clark’s cookbook Cook This Now. Not only are the recipes organized seasonally, but they’re listed by month, too. I love this approach. I always say I wish I had the foresight to organize my saved recipes on Reader or Pinterest by season because it would make it so much easier those nights I’m searching for things to add to our menu. Of course, it should come as no surprise that as I was flipping through April, I automatically stopped at a roasted chicken recipe. My love for roast chicken of different kinds is well documented here, and I knew this one would be a hit. We love smoked paprika, and citrus of any type is always a plus on chicken. I’m not huge on cilantro, as you know, but the amount in the marinade was minimal so I hardly noticed it. And of course, I took pictures of Tom’s plate because I didn’t want that soapy cilantro covering my delicious chicken. ;)
This chicken turned out great. The marinade is delicious—a little smoky from the paprika and just a hint of spice from the jalapeño, but the orange juice and ginger keep it light. Adding a few squeezes of blood orange juice over the roasted chicken makes it even brighter and more springy than your typical roast chicken. The skin is nice and crispy, and the meat is moist and perfectly cooked. Plus, it really couldn’t get easier. Take a couple minutes to throw together the marinade, and then toss the chicken into a pan when you’re ready to cook it. The oven does the rest of the work for you. I diced up some yukon gold potatoes and seasoned them with sweet paprika, a little garlic & onion powder, and salt and pepper. They roasted alongside the chicken so everything was hands-off while the meal was cooking. During the last 15 minutes or so, I tossed in asparagus (how happy am I that it’s asparagus season? SO HAPPY.) to make this a complete—and winning—meal.
Roasted Chicken with Smoked Paprika, Blood Orange, & Ginger
Adapted from Cook This Now by Melissa Clark
1 tsp. orange zest
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice, preferably blood orange
2 Tbsp. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 Tbsp. cilantro
1 jalapeño, seeded if desired, chopped
1 Tbsp. grated fresh ginger root
1.25 tsp. kosher salt
3/4 tsp. smoked hot paprika
1.75 lbs. bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
Sliced scallions, cilantro, and orange wedges for serving
In a blender or food processor, combine the zest, juice, olive oil, garlic, cilantro, jalapeño, ginger, salt, and paprika. Blend until pureed. Combine the chicken and marinade in a large bowl; cover and refrigerate at least one hour but preferably longer.
Preheat the oven to 475º. Place the chicken in a pan and roast until skin is golden and meat juices are no longer pink, about 40 minutes. Serve sprinkled with scallions and cilantro, with orange wedges for squeezing over the meat.