Cuban Citrus Chicken
This dish, inspired by the flavors of Cuba, features bold flavors and makes good use of fresh citrus juice. Here, orange and lime juice combined with garlic, onion and bay leaf form a simple but bold base for an easy main course. Serve with black beans, mashed sweet potatoes and sliced avocados drizzled with lime juice.
- 1 chicken, 4 to 5 lb. (2 to 2.5 kg), cut into 8 serving pieces, trimmed of excess skin and fat
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 Tbs. olive oil
- 8 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
- 3/4 cup (6 fl. oz./180 ml) fresh orange juice
- 3/4 cup (6 fl. oz./ 180 ml) lime juice, plus 2 limes, cut into wedges, for serving
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
- Chopped fresh cilantro for garnish
Season the chicken generously with salt and pepper.
Put the flameproof insert of a slow cooker on the stove top over medium-high heat, then add the olive oil and warm until hot. Working in batches to avoid crowding, add the chicken, skin side down, and cook until golden brown on the bottom, about 7 minutes. Turn the chicken and cook on the second side until lightly browned, about 3 minutes longer. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
Pour off all but 2 Tbs. of the fat in the insert. Return the insert to the stove top over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Pour in the orange and lime juices and raise the heat to high. Bring to a boil and deglaze the insert, stirring and scraping up the browned bits on the insert bottom with a wooden spoon.
Transfer the insert to the slow cooker and add the chicken and the bay leaf. Spread the onion evenly over the chicken and sprinkle with 1 tsp. salt. Cover and cook on low for 6 hours. The chicken should be tender and opaque throughout. Remove and discard the bay leaf.
Transfer the chicken to a platter and spoon the sauce over the top. Serve immediately, passing the cilantro and lime wedges at the table. Serves 6.
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Quick Slow Cooking, by Kim Laidlaw (Weldon Owen, 2014)