Sunday Brunch: Chicken Salmoriglio

WGN Weekend Morning News

Rosemary Branson Gill, director of education at Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street joins WGN Weekend Morning News to share her recipe for Chicken Salmoriglio, a Mediterranean chicken dish.

The recipe is in the newly released cookbook, ‘Milk Street: Tuesday Nights Mediterranean’.

Christopher Kimball’s Milk Street TV is on public television nationwide.

Chicken Salmoriglio (45 min. prep time, serves 4)


  • 1 tbsp. grated lemon zest, plus 2 lemons halved crosswise
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, finely grated
  • 1 tsp. dried oregano, crumbled
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 5 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 3 lbs. bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed and patted dry
  • 1 tbsp. honey
  • 1 bunch watercress, trimmed or 5 oz. container of baby arugala
  • 1 tbsp. finely chopped fresh oregano


  • Heat the oven to 475 degrees with a rack in the lower-middle position.
  • Grate 1 tbsp. zest from lemons, then halve lemons and trim off pointed ends so the halves sit stably with cut sides facing up; set lemon halves aside.
  • In a small bowl, stir together zest, garlic, dried oregano, 1 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper.
  • Measure 1 tbsp. of lemon-garlic mixture into large bowl.
  • Stir 4 tbsp. of oil into remaining mixture, set aside.
  • To the large bowl, add the remaining 1 tbsp. oil, honey, 2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper, then stir to combine.
  • Using a sharp knife, cut parallel slashes about 1 inch apart all the way to the bone on both sides of each chicken thigh.
  • Add the thighs to the bowl and turn to coat on all sides, rubbing the seasoning mixture into the slashes.
  • Arrange the chicken, skin side up, and the lemon halves, cut sides up, on a rimmed baking sheet.
  • Roast until the chicken is beginning to brown and the thickest part reaches 165 degrees to 170 degrees, about 20 minutes.
  • Leaving the chicken in the oven, turn on the broiler.
  • Continue to cook until the chicken is deep golden brown and the thickest part reaches about 175 degrees, about 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven.
  • Place the watercress on a serving platter, creating a bed for the chicken.
  • Using tongs, place the chicken on top of the watercress. Squeeze 3 tbsp. juice from 1 or 2 of the lemon halves, then stir the juice along with the fresh oregano into the lemon-garlic oil to make the salmoriglio.
  • Drizzle the sauce over the chicken and serve with the remaining lemon halves for squeezing.

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