Now that lively celebrations have found their way back onto millions of people’s social schedules, party hosts and hostesses who like to cook and entertain can brighten up their recipe repertoires with dishes that are easily expanded for a crowd. Feeding a houseful of people isn’t difficult when simple and tasty recipes are chosen for large gatherings.
This recipe for “Sweet and Salty Chicken” courtesy of “Throw a Great Party: Inspired by Evenings in Paris With Jim Haynes” (iUniverse) by Mary Bartlett, Antonia Hoogewerf and Catherine Monnet, is ideal for hosts. Select white or dark meat chicken depending on your preference, and enjoy the Mediterranean flavor that the capers, olives and oregano offer. Apricots or prunes provide a sweet bite that’s balanced by the wine and vinegar in the recipe. This dish will fill guests up, especially when paired with rice or potatoes.
Sweet and Salty Chicken
2 tablespoons garlic, chopped finely
6 tablespoons dried oregano
8 ounces red wine vinegar
9 bay leaves
2 cups olive oil
8 pounds boneless chicken, cubed
4 ounces capers and their juice
8 ounces apricots or pitted prunes
4 ounces green olives, pitted
1 cup brown sugar
2 cups white wine
In a large 3-gallon bowl, combine the garlic, oregano, vinegar, bay leaves, caper juice, olive oil, and vinegar.
Add the chicken, apricots or prunes, olives, capers, and stir. Cover with plastic wrap and let marinate for 24 hours in the refrigerator.
About 2 hours before serving, divide the chicken and the marinade between 2 9×13-inch baking pans or a large roasting pan. Sprinkle 1⁄2 cup brown sugar over each pan, followed by 1 cup of the white wine over each pan.
Bake in a moderately hot oven (350 F) for 1 hour. Serve with rice or parsley potatoes.
Wine pairing suggestion: Choose a dry white wine, either Pino Blanc or Pinot Grigio. Ask a wine specialist to recommend dry white Spanish and Italian wines.