The combination of oranges and dark chocolate goes beyond desserts. We’ve tasted chicken mole dishes before where the chicken is flavored by a Mexican sauce made from chilies and chocolate. However, this dish uses a marinade that combines the fruity flavor of blood orange extra virgin olive oil with the bittersweet flavor of dark chocolate balsamic vinegar. Add garlic and lemon and you’ve got a marinade that doubles as a savory dressing. We used chicken leg quarters which are relatively inexpensive cuts but the rich flavor achieved through this recipe makes this worthy of a dish for entertaining. The make-ahead nature of this recipe also makes it a perfect weekday menu option – it even got the kids asking for seconds!

3 tablespoons Attilio’s Blood Orange EVOO
¼ cup Attilio’s Chocolate Balsamic Vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4½ pounds chicken leg quarters, cut into pieces
½ cup chicken stock
juice from ½ of an orange, plus 1-2 teaspoons orange zest for garnish)
1-2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley leaves, for garnish

Rinse chicken and dry with paper towels.Trim any excess skin and visible fat from chicken pieces. Cut each leg quarter with a sharp knife separating into thigh and drumstick pieces.Prepare marinade by whisking the first seven ingredients together (the EVOO, balsamic vinegar, Dijon mustard, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper).

Since the mustard is a good emulsifier, you don’t need to stream in the EVOO; you can mix all the ingredients at once.Place all the chicken pieces and the marinade into a zipper locking bag. Seal securely and toss well to combine.Refrigerate for at least 3 hours, tossing the chicken pieces occasionally. You can refrigerate the chicken longer and even overnight if necessary but you don’t want to go beyond 24 hours.Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Transfer chicken and all the marinade into a greased or non-stick baking pan. Roast in oven on the middle rack for about an hour until the chicken is cooked through.

Keep an eye on it every so often; if the chicken skin begins to burn, cover with foil.When the chicken is done, transfer to a serving platter and tent with foil.

Place the baking pan on the stove top over med-high heat and add the ½ cup of chicken stock and the juice from ½ of the orange. Scrape any browned bits from the bottom of the pan and reduce the sauce for about 5 minutes until it thickens.Spoon the sauce over the chicken pieces and garnish with the chopped parsley leaves and orange zest. Serve immediately.SERVES 4-6