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Recipe of the week: Chicken Marbella: The Silver Palate’s most famous recipe

Twenty-five years ago, two young chefs, Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso, published a cookbook of the best recipes from their gourmet takeout shop, The Silver Palate, on New York’s Upper West Side. The original edition of The Silver Palate Cookbook, written

Twenty-five years ago, two young chefs, Sheila Lukins and Julee Rosso,published a cookbook of the best recipes from their gourmet takeout shop, The Silver Palate, on New York’s Upper West Side. The original editionof The Silver Palate Cookbook, written with co-author Michael McLaughlin,sold 2.3 million copies, and Workman Publishing has now released a 25th anniversary edition. Chicken Marbella, with its distinctive combination ofprunes, olives, and capers, became the shop’s—and, later, the cookbook’s—biggest hit. It’s good either hot or at room temperature, say the authors,and—when prepared with small drumsticks and wings—also makes a delicious hors d’oeuvre. Overnight marinating is essential to the moistness of the finished product.

Recipe of the weekChicken Marbella

4 chickens, 2-1/2 pounds each, quartered1 head of garlic, peeled and finely puréed1/4 cup dried oreganoCoarse salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste1/2 cup red wine vinegar1/2 cup olive oil1 cup pitted prunes1/2 cup pitted Spanish green olives1/2 cup capers with a bit of juice6 bay leaves1 cup brown sugar1 cup white wine1/4 cup Italian parsley or fresh cilantro, finely chopped

In large bowl combine chicken quarters, garlic, oregano, pepper, coarse salt to taste, vinegar, olive oil, prunes, olives, capers and juice, bay leaves. Cover and let marinate, refrigerated, overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Arrange chicken in single layer in one or two large, shallow baking pans and spoon marinade over it evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar and pour white wine around them. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour, basting frequently with pan juices. Chicken is done when thigh pieces, pricked with fork at their thickest, yield clear yellow (rather than pink) juice. With slotted spoon transfer chicken, prunes, olives, capers to serving platter. Moisten with several spoonfuls of pan juices; sprinkle generously with parsley or cilantro. Pass remaining panjuices in sauceboat.

To serve Chicken Marbella cold, cool to room temperature in cooking juices before transferring to a serving platter. If chicken has been covered and refrigerated, allow it to return to room temperature before serving. Spoon some of reserved juices over chicken. Serves 10.

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