Roasted Chicken Thighs with Fennel, Saffron and Clementines

Fennel is in the markets right now. Its subtle anise flavor blends well with saffron and orange to delicately flavor the chicken. If you use a whole chicken, add the breast meat to the pan in the oven 15 minutes after everything else has gone in. This would be a nice dish for Passover Seder.


  • 8 chicken thighs skin on, bone-in or 1 3 lb chicken cut into 8 serving pieces
  • 2 teaspoons sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper, freshly ground
  • 2 good-sized bulbs of fennel trimmed, cored, and halved. Reserve any fronds.
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 1/3 cup fresh-squeezed orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 4 Clementine oranges sliced


Time: 1 hour
Yield: 6

Make the Chicken

  • Pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Salt and pepper it all over.
  • Toast the saffron in a hot skillet off the heat. Crumble it into the wine.
  • Cut each ½ fennel bulb into 4 wedges.
  • Combine all the ingredients in a large container. Toss to coat the chicken well with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Take it out an hour before roasting.
  • Preheat the oven to 450º F.
  • Arrange the chicken, skin side up, the fennel, and the oranges in a single layer in a baking dish. Pour the marinade over. Roast the chicken for 45 minutes until well browned and cooked through. The internal temperature should read 160º F. Remove from the oven.
  • Platter the chicken and fennel. Cover loosely with foil. Pour off the juices into a saucepan and rapidly reduce by 1/3. Pour the sauce over the chicken and garnish with the chopped reserved fennel fronds.
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