Who said weeknight chicken and rice has to be boring? Not so, here. This chicken dish gets its earthy flavor from shiitake mushrooms, onions, and soy sauce and its sweetness from sugar, fresh orange juice, and a touch of zest.
Position a rack about 7 inches from the broiler and heat the oven to 450°F. Line the bottom of a broiler pan with foil and lightly oil the top of the pan.
Season the chicken all over with 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Arrange the shiitake in 8 pairs, gill sides up, on the prepared broiler pan and season with salt and pepper. Arrange 2 or 3 scallion pieces on top of each mushroom pair, then put a chicken thigh, skin side up, on top. Press with your hand to flatten. Roast until the edges of the chicken begin to brown and an instantread thermometer inserted in a thick part of the biggest thigh registers 165°F, about 20 minutes. Turn the broiler to high and broil until the skin is crisp and deeply browned, 5 to 6 minutes, rotating the pan once for even browning.
While the chicken is cooking, combine the soy sauce, sugar, mirin, and orange zest in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
In a small bowl, stir the orange juice and cornstarch; add this mixture to the saucepan. Return to a simmer and cook, stirring constantly, until thickened and glossy, about 1 minute.
To serve, transfer the chicken, scallions, and mushrooms to dinner plates, drizzle with the sauce, and sprinkle with the sesame seeds.
There’s no better accompaniment to this dish than white rice.
nutrition information (per serving):
21, Fat Calories
190, Saturated Fat
33, Monounsaturated Fat
17, Polyunsaturated Fat
Photo: Scott Phillips