This recipe is taken from the Silver Palate Cookbook. My family has had our copy for so long that the spine is falling apart, but it’s more a sign of love than age. While there are a lot of great recipes in the cookbook, this is probably the most popular.
Named after the style of chicken made in a small town on the Mediterranean coast in Spain, this chicken makes for a great summer meal. I’ve made some minor alterations because the original recipe was rather fancy, but the original can easily be found online if you’re more of a purist. The recipe emphasizes how important it is to marinate the chicken overnight. It also comments (and it was my experience as well) that the cooked chicken gets better after sitting in the fridge for a day or two. Makes 10 or more portions, but the recipe is easy to divide if needed.
2 1/2 pounds of chicken (or 4 chickens, quartered)
1 head of garlic, peeled and finely puréed
1/4 cup dried oregano
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 cup pitted prunes
1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives
1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice
6 bay leaves
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white wine
1/4 cup Italian parsley or fresh coriander (cilantro), finely chopped
1. In a large bowl combine chicken quarters, garlic, oregano, pepper and coarse salt to taste, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, and bay leaves. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, overnight.
2. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
3. Arrange chicken in a single layer in one or two large, shallow baking pans (I used an inch deep pyrex baking dish) and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them.
4. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, basting frequently with pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with a fork at their thickest, yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice.
5. Place chicken away on stovetop away from heat to cool to your preferred temperature and enjoy!
If you have a lot of leftovers and don’t want to transfer everything to containers, you can store the chicken in the pan by simply covering the top with tin foil. If chicken has been covered and refrigerated, allow it to return to room temperature before serving and spoon some of the reserved juices over chicken.