Grapefruit Chicken

Submitted by Cyndee Sindelar

About the cook: I've been an enthusiastic home cook for over 40 years! My first creations were in my Easy Bake Oven, then I graduated to making scrambled eggs and toast, at eight years old. Before long, I was making pot roasts, seafood dishes, and Duck a l'Orange. Exploring foods from around the world has also been exciting, as has putting my own touches to dishes, and coming up with my own special creations.

About the dish: Grapefruit, with some brandy and sherry, help make this French-inspired chicken dish deliciously succulent. This is one of the dishes I make to impress guests. It has a flambe step, which my husband loves to watch.

National Origin: French

Serves: 5

Estimated Time: 1 to 2 Hours


1 medium chicken, cut up into individual parts (with bones and skin)
1/2 cup flour, for dredging chicken
4 Tablespoons butter
3 Tablespoons regular brandy or Cognac
1 wine glass full of sherry (about 5 fluid oz)
1 cup chicken broth
2 large or 3 medium grapefruit (pink or red), half juiced and half with sections removed
Salt and pepper to taste
½ teaspoon corn starch dissolved in 1 Tablespoon water or broth (optional)
Parsley sprigs, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 375 F.

Cut up chicken, or buy one that’s already cut up (2 breast halves, thighs, drumsticks, and wings, all with skin and bone). If the breast halves are large, they can be split in half. Salt and pepper pieces and then lightly coat them with flour.

Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a wide oven proof deep frying pan. Heat until bubbling hot, then add chicken pieces.

Brown chicken pieces in butter on all sides, turning down heat if necessary, to ensure butter doesn’t burn. After the chicken pieces are browned evenly, remove from heat. If desired, remove chicken temporarily and pour off all but 1-2 tablespoons pan fats.

Return chicken to pan. Pour the brandy over the chicken and quickly flambé.

Once the flames have subsided, cover the pan with foil or oven-safe lid and bake in the oven until the chicken is tender and cooked through – about 30 to 40 minutes (or 165 F with meat thermometer).

While the chicken is baking, prepare the grapefruit for later use. Squeeze juice from one large grapefruit (or 1.5 medium sized) and reserve, discarding seeds. Skin the second large grapefruit (or 1.5 medium sized) – removing the pith – and carefully cut out sections from membrane, removing seeds. Set aside separately from the juice.

When done, remove the cooked chicken from the pan, reserving pan juices, and set aside in a large serving dish, keeping warm.

Prepare the sauce in the pan (with juices) over high heat. First add the sherry, then the chicken broth and grapefruit juice. Salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then boil until the liquid is reduced by half. If you desire a slightly thicker sauce, stir in 1/2 teaspoon corn starch that was dissolved in a tablespoon of water or chicken broth.

Add the prepared grapefruit sections to the sauce. Cook 2 more minutes, and then pour all of the finished sauce over the chicken in the serving dish. Garnish, if desired, with fresh sprigs of parsley.

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