Roast Chicken with Empress Plums Recipe

The Hale Groves Team
Roast Chicken Plums

Prep time:

Cook time:


There may be a lot of ingredients to assemble, but the incredible flavor and easy preparation that go into this fabulous roast chicken, dressed up with caramelized plums, make it worth it. Sure to be a hit at your next holiday or Sunday dinner, this roast chicken bursts with flavor thanks to a garlicky sumac spice rub brightened with lemon zest. The fragrant drippings help to season the sliced plums in the roasting pan, making a fruity, chutney-like sauce that pairs well with the meat and can be poured over steamed rice.


For the chicken:
1 whole chicken, 2 lbs.
1 large lemon, zested and juiced
1 Tbsp. ground sumac
2 tsp. kosher salt
½ Tbsp. black pepper
½ tsp. cinnamon
½ tsp. allspice
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
½ Tbsp. fresh thyme, more for garnish

For the plums:
1⅛ lbs. Hale Groves Empress Plums, halved
2 shallots, sliced into ¼-inch-thick rounds
1 Tbsp. honey
½ Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. cinnamon
⅛ tsp. allspice
1 small bay leaf


  1. In a bowl, Combine suman, salt, pepper, cinnamon, allspice and lemon zest. Stir in one tablespoon olive oil and garlic until mixture reaches consistency of wet sand. Rub mixture all over chicken, including the cavity.
  2.  Place thyme in chicken cavity. Place chicken on a roasting rack over a baking sheet and marinate overnight in refrigerator.
  3. Let chicken come to room temperature on countertop for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to When ready to roast, let chickens come to room temperature for 30 minutes. Heat oven to 425°F.
  4.  In a large roasting pan, toss together plums, shallots, honey, oil, salt, cinnamon, allspice, bay leaf, and 2 tablespoons water. Spread evenly over the bottom of the pan. Move chicken on rack over plum mixture in roasting pan. Roast 30 minutes.
  5.  Mix lemon juice with remaining olive oil and drizzle over chicken. Reduce oven to 350°F and continue to roast until chicken is golden brown and cooked through (30 to 45 minutes).
  6.  Remove chicken from oven, cover loosely with foil and let rest ten minutes. Carve and serve with the plums and more thyme for garnish.
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