Blood Orange Bourbon Chicken {A Recipe}

I talked yesterday about my reflections and goals for the new year, and with that, I’ve been thinking a lot about my little Freckled Fork blog.

I think when I first introduced the FF blog last year, I wanted to create a space where I could explore all areas of food…cooking food, eating food, sharing food experiences, and writing about food. I think I’ll continue on that path for 2019 and see what the year brings…hopefully some clarity and focus:)

In reflection, I realized that when I looked at my own blog-reading habits, I personally do not read blogs anymore. If I’m searching for a recipe, I definitely “skip to recipe” or scroll past all the writing to the goods at the bottom of the post. (I KNOW.)

All that to say, I think for 2019, when I share a recipe, I’ll try my darndest to make it short & sweet, giving you the recipe “above the fold” if you will<3 Here we go:

Blood Orange Bourbon Chicken

Alternative Name: Old Fashioned Chicken 🙂
Inspired by and adapted from one of my favorite chefs, Yotam Ottolenghi. Using ingredients I had on hand, subbing a few for a different twist (an ode to one of my favorite go-to cocktails), here’s my take on his Roasted Chicken w/Clementines & Arak. 
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time35 mins
Total Time45 mins
Course: Dinner, Main Course
Keyword: blood oranges, bourbon chicken, Chicken
Servings: 4
Author: jess masanotti


  • 1/2 C Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2-3 Dashes Angostura Bitters
  • 1 Small Meyer Lemon, Juiced
  • 2 Small Blood Orange, 1 Juiced + 1 sliced into rings (w/rind)
  • 2 Sprigs Fresh Thyme, leaves pinched off
  • 1 Tbsp Dijon Mustard or Grainy Mustard
  • 2 Tsp Brown Sugar
  • S & P
  • 1 Medium Fennel Bulb, trimmed + halved + cut into medium slices
  • 1 lb. Boneless Chicken Thighs (skin on is best, but skinless works too!)
  • 3-4 Sprigs Fresh Parsley, leaves pinched off + loosely chopped
  • 2 Tbsp Bourbon or Rye Whiskey
  • Basmati Rice


  • Marinade // In a bowl, whisk together olive oil, Angostura Bitters, lemon juice, orange juice, thyme, mustard and brown sugar. Sprinkle chicken thighs with salt & pepper. Add in fennel slices and blood orange slices to the chicken and pour marinade over top of the chicken, fennel, orange slices. Cover and shake to combine. 
    NOTE: If you have time, let the chicken rest in the marinade for 1+ hours before cooking. If not, totally fine, I’ve made this both ways and it’s good even if you let it marinate for the 10-15 minutes while you preheat the oven.
  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees. 
  • Transfer the chicken mixture to a large roasting pan. If using skin-on chicken, make sure the skin is facing up. Arrange fennel & orange slices around and on top of chicken.
  • Roast for 35 minutes, until chicken is browned and cooked through. Using a meat thermometer, chicken should read around 165 degrees before you remove it. 
  • Once cooked through, spoon out chicken, fennel and orange slices on a serving tray and cover to keep warm. Pour the remaining liquid into a small saucepan over medium heat.
  • Stir in Bourbon (or Rye Whiskey). Bring to a boil and then reduce heat to simmer until liquid is reduced by half. Feel free to spoon out any residual fat that rests on the top of the liquid.
  • Pour blood orange/Bourbon liquid over the chicken, top with parsley. Serve over Basmati Rice or Cauliflower Rice if GF.

Sorry, one more note of interest.

Did you know that only 5 people in the world know the full recipe for THE Angostura Bitters? To this day, The House of Angostura bottles up bitters using the same recipe Johann Gottlieb Benjamin Siegert (a medic in the Prussian army) came up with in Angostura, Venezuela back in 1824.

Rumor has it that the actual recipe uses over 40 ingredients. These 5 people made a pact to never fly on a plane together, or to even eat in the same restaurant. No joke. Everything is secretly gathered, mixed and bottled in their headquarters in Trinidad and Tobago.

Another fun note is that Siegert originally concocted the mixture to help digestive issues and it was also known to ward off mosquitos when rubbed on the skin. The more you know. <3

Let me know if you get around to trying the recipe and how it turns out!

One Reply

  • The recipe sounds delicious! I’ll give it a go! I enjoyed the story behind the bitters. The story behind Drambuie is interesting. It was a secret recipe of Bonnie Prince Charlie. The recipe was given to the MacDonald clan as a gift of gratitude for saving him from the British. Hope to see you and your crew sometime soon! Tachi

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