Chicken, fennel and blood orange traybake

Chicken, fennel and blood orange traybake

Blood oranges are available in the shops at the moment, and at the time of writing Covid-19 has not caused us to panic buy them. They are delicious eaten on their own as one of our five-a-day or baked in a tart or cake, but why not try using them in savoury recipes too?

In this all-in-one-tin dish, the chicken acquires a delicious crisp, caramelised skin and its juices combine with all the other ingredients to make a wonderfully flavourful supper.

I got the idea from a Sainsbury’s recipe by Sarah Randell, but there were quite a few stages to it and in adapting it for the Aga, I realised the process could be made much simpler.

Chicken, fennel and blood orange traybake


(Serves 2)

  • 4 bone in, skin on chicken thighs
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 2 blood oranges
  • 350g Charlotte potatoes (or any waxy type)
  • 2 tbsps olive oil
  • 6 unpeeled garlic cloves
  • 6 small rosemary sprigs
  • 1 cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 2 tbsps clear honey
  • 100ml Madeira or Marsala
  • 35g pistachios


  • Quarter the potatoes lengthways
  • Peel the onion, halve it and then cut each half into four wedges
  • Trim the fennel and slice into thin wedges
  • Place the potatoes, onion, fennel, cinnamon, garlic and rosemary in the small Aga roasting tin, season and toss everything in the olive oil
  • Season the chicken thighs and tuck them in among everything else in the roasting tin
  • Mix the juice of one of the oranges with the honey and stir in the Madeira/Marsala
  • Pour about half of this over everything and slide the tin onto the second set of runners in the roasting oven for 15 minutes
  • After this time pour over the remaining juice/honey/Madeira mixture and return the tin to the roasting oven for about 25 minutes, but check it after 15
  • Quarter the other orange and then chop each quarter in half and add these to the roasting tin for the final 10 minutes or so of cooking
  • If you want to slow things down you can place the tin in the simmering oven once the chicken has a good colour, after about 30 minutes, and leave it there until you’re ready to eat
  • Meanwhile put the pistachios on the small Aga baking tray and bake in the baking oven for 4-5 minutes until nicely toasted. Leave to cool and then chop roughly. Sprinkle over the finished dish

I served this straight from the tin since it was just the two of us, but you could of course transfer everything to a nice serving dish or platter. Don’t waste any of the delicious juices in the tin and spoon some over each serving. Serve with a green vegetable or salad.