Recipe video above. Everybody loves the glaze on a Christmas ham. So one year, I used it for chicken instead and people went mad over it! Easier and cheaper than ham, with a much higher ratio of glaze to meat, this is so good I've actually had people tell me they love this more than Christmas ham!!It's ultra-sticky on the outside, and smells and tastes like Christmas. The meat is super tender – we've practically slow cooked the chicken!
Mix Marinade ingredients in a jug. Pour over chicken in a large ziplock bag (Note 2). Massage to coat, then marinate chicken for ideally 24 hours (bare minimum is 3 hrs, 12 hrs is ok).
Preheat oven to 200°C/390°F (180°C fan).
Line 2 trays with foil then parchment/baking paper (you'll thank me later).
Distribute chicken on trays, then pour the marinade over. Roast 30 minutes.
Roast for a further 20 minutes, basting with pan juices 2 or 3 more times until the chicken is deep golden and sticky. At first, the juices will be watery but in the final 10 minutes or so, they will thicken and darken. Once this happens, baste more frequently and heavily. (Note 4)
When the top tray is almost ready, switch the tray positions (ie move bottom tray up and put the top tray undenerath) so they finish at the same time. GOAL: Deep golden and sticky chicken!
Before plating up, baste again with the sticky juices.
Serving suggestion: Spread leafy greens on a platter, pile on sticky chicken. Decorate with orange slices or wedges.
1. Chicken - Skin is required for the glaze to really caramelise beautifully. Bone-in is best because the chicken pieces stay juicy for the cook time required to make the chicken sticky, and it also resembles a "mini-ham"!Whole Chicken - I really wanted it to work but it didn't! You would need to double or triple the marinade to brine a whole chicken successfully. I tried a paste form but the sugar caused the top of the chicken to get "too caramelised:" (ie burnt!) before the sides even got colour. However, if you spatchcock/butterfly the chicken, I am confident it will work because it cooks in almost the same time as the pieces I used!For boneless skinless thighs and breast - Recipe needs to be amended as follows:
Pound breast to 2cm / 0.8" even thickness;
Marinate thighs / breast per recipe, then remove chicken. Simmer reserved marinade in a saucepan until it thickens into a thick glaze - about 5 minutes on medium. Use the glaze for basting;
Oven - 20 minutes at 180°C/350°F (or until internal temperature registers 65°C/149°F for breast and 75°C/165°F for thighs). Baste at 15 minutes, 18 minutes then just before serving.
BBQ & stove - cook breast 6 minutes on medium high, basting regularly. Cook thighs on medium for 8 minutes.
2. Ziplock bag is best to get the chicken fully coated in the marinade. If you prefer not to use, you can use a bowl or non reactive container instead, but increase the marinade by 50% and toss the chicken once or twice during the marinating time. If you scale up the marinade, do not pour over the extra 50% when roasting - it will create too much liquid and make the glaze too salty.3. Orange zest curls - Use a zester or sharp knife to cut thin strips. Twist around the handle of a wooden spoon or similar, then leave for 15 minutes+ then it will hold its curled shape.4. Glaze adjustment - if the tray juices haven't thickened to a syrup by the 50 minute mark (see post for variables that can cause this), then remove the chicken (cover with foil to keep warm) and return empty trays to oven. Tray juices will reduce in minutes into a syrup, at which point they can be used to glaze the chicken.5. Storage - Leftovers will keep for 4 days in the fridge and reheat to sticky, juicy perfection. Can also be frozen - thaw then reheat using microwave or loosely covered in the oven (180C/350F for 15 min or so). Because it reheats so well, this is a good one to make ahead entirely, though the caramelisation is slightly better when freshly made.Make ahead - Combine chicken with marinade then put it straight in the freezer. Then thaw the chicken in the fridge for 24 hours, during this time the chicken will marinade. Cook per recipe.6. Nutrition per serving, assuming 8 servings. Note that this does not take into account fat from chicken left on the tray so the calories are higher than reality.