Woodwind Gourmet: Spicy Orange-Glazed Chicken with Almond Rice

IMG_8139“I always knew it helped to be both fruity and nutty if you wanted to be an oboist, but it never occurred to me to take those two elements outside of the practice room and bring them into the kitchen (another of my favorite places to spend time). I decided to put together a small series of recipes to highlight the musical union of oboes, oranges, and almonds.”

The second recipe in our series about oboes, oranges, and almonds is sure to be a dinnertime hit on those weeknights when that everyday chicken could use a lilt. A spritz of fresh citrus, some herbs and spices from the pantry, an easy, nutty rice… all you need to add is a salad or a veggie side and then put on your favorite zesty oboe music!

Spicy Orange-Glazed Chicken with Almond Rice
Serves 4

    Spice Rub:
    3/4 teaspoon dried thyme
    1/2 teaspoon dried sage
    1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary
    1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
    1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
    1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
    1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne
    1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

    1 pound boneless skinless chicken thighs
    1 large navel orange
    1 tablespoon olive oil IMG_8170
    1/4 cup dry white wine
    3 tablespoons orange marmalade

    Almond Rice:
    1 tablespoon olive oil
    1/2 medium onion, minced
    1/2 cup slivered or sliced almonds
    1/4 teaspoon sea salt
    1 cup long-grain white rice
    2 cups chicken stock
    Chopped fresh parsley (optional)

    Combine the spice rub ingredients in a small bowl; stir well. Rub chicken all over with spice mixture; let stand 5 minutes. Meanwhile, grate the zest of the orange and then juice the orange, reserving juice; set aside.

    Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add chicken; cook 2 minutes on each side or until lightly browned. Add reserved orange juice, zest and wine to skillet; cover, reduce heat, and lightly simmer 6 minutes or until chicken is done. Remove chicken to a plate tented with foil; keep warm. Bring juices in pan to a boil; cook until reduced to about 3 tablespoons. Remove from heat and stir in the marmalade until incorporated. Return chicken and any accumulated juices to pan. Cover and keep warm.

    While chicken is cooking, prepare the almond rice: in a 2-quart saucepan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Stir in the onion, almonds, and salt; cook, stirring frequently 5-7 minutes or until the onion is softened and the almonds are golden-brown. Add the rice; and continue to cook and stir for 1 minute. Slowly add the stock; and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer 15 minutes or until liquid is absorbed. Allow to sit 5 minutes then fluff with a fork and garnish with parsley.

    Serve the chicken and sauce atop the almond rice and garnish with additional chopped parsley and freshly ground black pepper, if desired.

Dinner’s done… now let’s tango!

The other recipes in the oboes, oranges, and almonds series:

Orange-Almond Rice Pudding
Orange-Almond Scones

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