While working on my latest cookbook – Coffee Man, Cinnamon Girl: The Cookbook – I stumbled across an interesting recipe on the internet. It claimed to be Panamanian, but none of my Panamanian friends were familiar with it. Nevertheless, I tried it out, and it turned out to be very good! The friend I cooked it for licked her fingers and raved about its masculine tastes and smells. The only drawback is that there’s a lot of left-over marinade. Then again, perhaps you could use it for second helpings the next day…

Chicken in a Garlic and Orange Marinade


Serves 4
Preparation 30 min. + marinating overnight + 1.5 hours roasting

1 small chicken (about 1.8 kg)
25 cloves garlic (yeas that's a lot)
225 ml orange juice (from about 2 oranges)
2.5 tsp salt
100ml balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp ground pepper
2 tbsp ground allspice
2 tbsp Worcester sauce
1 bay leaf


Blend the garlic cloves with 2 tbsp orange juice and salt to form a smooth paste.

Mix the garlic paste with the spices, Worchester sauce, vinegar, and the remaining orange juice.

Quarter the chicken, and put it in a large bowl, having placed the bay leaves at the bottom first. Pour the garlic marinade over everything. Seal firmly and leave in the fridge to marinate overnight.

Take the chicken out of the marinade and place onto a baking dish. Roast at 180C for 1.5 hours, occasionally pouring the gravy over everything. If the chicken gets too dark on the outside, cover the baking dish with aluminium foil and continue roasting.

Meanwhile, cook the rice and serve it alongside the chicken, drizzled with the remaining gravy from the bottom of the baking dish.

Inspired by: Saveur magazine.