Versailles Garlic Chicken over Rice

Versailles Garlic Chicken

From Kitchen Princess Adapted from The Kitchn Blog

Serves 6

You will need:

2 gallon-sized ziplock bags

5 lbs. chicken (4 breasts, 4 thighs, 4 wings)

5 lemons (3 sliced in half and 2 juiced)

1 cup kosher salt

1 ½ cups sour orange juice

20 cloves of garlic

¼ cup vegetable oil (I used canola)

¼ teaspoon cumin powder

1 large white onion (not yellow), sliced into rings

1 cup white rice

salt and pepper


1. Brine the chicken: Bring 4 cups of water to boil in a small pot on the stove. Turn off the flame, add 1 cup of salt and let sit for 5 minutes. In a large bowl that will fit in your refrigerator, cover the chicken with 10 cups of cold water and add the salt water mixture. Squeeze in the juice from three lemons and throw the rinds in. Refrigerate for 12 hours.

2. In a blender, combine the sour orange juice, garlic cloves, cumin, juice of 2 lemons and about ½ teaspoon salt and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Blend on high for 30 seconds – or until the garlic is broken up. A food processor will also work.

3. Divide the chicken into two large ziplock bags, divide the orange garlic mixture as well. Seal the bags, shake a bit and marinate at room temperature for two hours.

4. Remove the chicken to a plate, pat dry and season with salt and pepper. Reserve the marinade for cooking.

5. Make the rice by brining 1 cup rice, a pinch of salt and a squeeze of lemon to boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes, fluff with a fork and set aside.

6. Preheat your oven to 350. Heat ½ of the oil in a large cast iron skillet over medium-high heat. Cook 3 pieces of chicken, skin side down until very crispy. About 5 minutes each side and repeat until all chicken is browned, adding more oil as needed. *If you don’t have a cast-iron skillet, you can use a regular non-stick pan and just transfer all the chicken and juices into a large glass baking dish for the oven.

7. Add the marinade to the hot pan and add as much chicken as will fit and cover with aluminum foil. Braise in the oven for about 45 minutes. Use a second pan if you have to – or simply roast the extra chicken on a baking sheet.

8. Remove the chicken from the pan and set to rest. Bring the sauce to boil on the stove and reduce by a quarter (about 8 minutes) and scrape all the bits from the roasting pan into the sauce. Season with salt and pepper if necessary. Add the onion rings at the last moment when you are ready to serve (you want them to be almost raw). Serve with the rice, fried plantains and black beans.