Borrow a little bit from Julia’s unsurpassable Chicken a l’Orange, add some of those flavors from a favorite Chinese take-out, taste and add, taste and add some more, and voila!  A new Orange Chicken comes into the world.  The basics are always a good place to start—sweet, tart, salty, tangy.  Add a little heat, a bit more sweet, some fragrant herbs—keep tasting!!!  The sauce base is best made the day before, shaken very well and stored in a sealed glass jar overnight.  Any cut of chicken works fine here—cut pieces the same size. 

Sauce base:

  • 1 cup orange juice (fresh or from concentrate)
  • Zest from 1 orange
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup orange marmalade
  • 2 tblsp Dijon mustard
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 2 tblsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tblsp lemon juice
  • A little garlic oil
  • Fresh grated ginger
  • Tabasco sauce
  • Sprig of rosemary, very finely chopped
  • Salt and pepper

Combine all in glass jar and shake very well—taste and adjust to suit.  Seal and store overnight.


Cut chicken in pieces—dry brine with salt, paprika and brown sugar.  Store in plastic bag for an hour or so.  Preheat oven to Broil.  Heat neutral oil in heavy frying pan. Pat dry chicken pieces with several paper towels—then toss lightly with cornstarch.  Sear quicky in very hot oil—a minute or two on each side.  Remove to foil-lined metal baking sheet.  Reduce heat to medium and add sauce base to frying pan.  Heat to simmer—add a little cornstarch/water slurry to thicken sauce and continue to simmer. Spoon some sauce over chicken—then run under the broiler until bubbling.  Meat thermometer should read 165’. Slide chicken onto platter and top with toasted sesame seeds.  Serve sauce on the side.

The Kitchen Hive

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