Roasted Chicken with Apricots (a favorite dish in Israel)

Serves 4


2 heads of garlic

1/4 cup chopped cilantro

1/4 cup chopped parsley

3 1/2 T. margarine, room temperature, or if preferred, extra virgin olive oil

2 T. lemon juice

1 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. fresh black pepper

1/2 tsp. paprika

1/4 tsp. cumin

1/2 tsp. Ancho Chili Harissa, optional

8 pieces skin-on, bone-in chicken (use your favorite cuts)

3/4 cup dried apricots

1 T. olive oil (use after chicken has marinated)

Salt and fresh black pepper

Paprika, to garnish


Preheat oven to 375˚F (190˚C). Place the heads of garlic in a baking dish and roast for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool.

Cut the tops off of the heads of garlic and squeeze out the soft, sticky garlic cloves into a food processor. Add the cilantro, parsley, margarine (or olive oil), lemon juice, salt, pepper, paprika, cumin and harissa. Pulse a few times until a thick paste has formed.

Place the chicken in a baking dish and smother with the roasted garlic paste, making sure to push some of the paste under the skin of the chicken. Cover with plastic wrap and place in the fridge to marinate overnight (or a minimum of 6 hours).

Preheat the oven to 400˚F (205˚C). Remove the chicken from the fridge and allow it to rest on the countertop for 15 minutes while the oven preheats. Scatter the apricots around the chicken. Drizzle with the 1 tablespoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover the top of the dish with tinfoil.

Roast for 30 minutes. Remove the tinfoil and continue roasting for an additional 15 to 20 minutes. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165˚F (75˚C).

Turn the broiler to high. Sprinkle the chicken with a bit of paprika and leave under the broiler to crisp for about 5 minutes or until the skin is golden brown.

Let the chicken rest 10 minutes before serving.