Seville Orange Chicken (Sour or Bitter Orange)

Or Dajaj Naranj in transliterated Arabic.  In parts of the Arabic speaking world, "naranj" may simply mean "orange," but often refers specifically to the sour orange, also known as the Seville orange or bitter orange.
My Seville oranges. 
If you live in an area where they grow fresh, or have a good produce market that stocks them, give them a try. They are large and have rougher and bumpier skin than other oranges.  If I can't get them at the produce market, I substitute by using the juice of two sweet oranges and the juice of  one lemon.
Seville Oranges

I typically use a whole chicken or a whole chicken cut in pieces for this recipe, but you can substitute breasts or other parts.  Just make sure to adjust the baking time accordingly.

Prep time takes just a few minutes to season the chicken, squeeze the oranges, place it in a pan and pop it in the oven.

Oven 375
9x13 Baking Dish
One hour for whole chicken parts.

One whole chicken, cut in 8-10 pieces.
3 Seville oranges OR 2 oranges any variety and 1 lemon.
Seven Spice or Allspice
Ground Coriander


  • Season chicken as desired with spices and rub into the chicken.
  • Place in the baking dish.
  • Squeeze the oranges (and lemon, if using) and pour over the chicken.
  • Add about 1/2 C. water to the pan.
  • Bake at 375 for about an hour, adjusting time for other chicken cuts.
  • Baste with juice half-way through cooking.

1. Use plenty of turmeric (yellow) and paprika (red) to give the chicken pieces a nice orange color.

2. Seven spice is a spice blend that contains a variety of spices, and commonly includes black pepper, cumin, coriander, allspice, cinnamon, nutmeg and mace. If not available, just use allspice.

3. This spice blend goes nicely with the oranges, it smellslike an orange pomander.

4. If using bone-in chicken parts, the juices from the chicken will combine with the citrus juice to make a tangy broth you can serve with rice.

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