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Chicken Thighs Baked with Lemon, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme

2 large cloves garlic

Kosher or sea salt

3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

12 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed of fat, rinsed and patted dry

2 large lemons, each cut into 6 (1/4-inch-thick) rounds

1 bunch fresh rosemary, snipped into 12 (2-inch) pieces

1 bunch fresh thyme, snipped into 12 (2-inch) pieces

12 fresh sage leaves

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Using a mortar and pestle (or a small mixing bowl and the back of a spoon), mash the garlic with a large pinch of salt to create a coarse paste. (Or mince the garlic very finely on a cutting board.) Slowly add the oil in drops while pounding and grinding the paste until the aioli is thick, creamy and emulsified.

Put the chicken in a large bowl. Rub aioli all over, including under the skin. Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight.

Set a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Arrange the lemon slices in a single layer in a large shallow roasting pan or a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Top each slice with a piece of rosemary, a piece of thyme and a sage leaf. Place the chicken thighs, skin side up on top; sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Bake until the skin is golden and the juices run clear, 45 to 60 minutes.

If the lemon slices and chicken produce a lot of juices, make a pan sauce: Transfer the chicken (keeping the herbs and lemon slices underneath) to a plate and cover loosely with aluminum foil. Tilt pan to pool juices in one corner. Spoon off the fat that rises to the top. Set the pan over medium heat (if the pan isn't flameproof, pour the juices into a small skillet) and scrape up any stuck-on bits. Let the juices boil and reduce so they thicken to a sauce. To maintain the bird's crisp skin, drizzle the sauce around, not on, the chicken. Serve the chicken pieces sitting on their beds of lemon and herbs.

Makes 6 servings.