Sunday, October 04, 2009

French Chicken in a Pot

This is a great simple recipe that I saw on America's Test Kitchen.

I simplified their version even more and the taste is still unbelievable.
I only have a 3.5 qt Le Crueset dutch oven but I still wanted to do this recipe

Serves 4
1 whole roasting chicken (4 1/2 to 5 pounds), giblets removed and discarded
1 tablespoon table salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 small onion , chopped medium (about 1/2 cup)
6 medium garlic cloves , peeled and crushed
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon dryed rosemary

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F.
Combine salt and pepper in a small bowl (this will be the dry rub).
Rinse the chicken and pat as dry as possible with paper towels.
Sprinkle the salt and pepper mixture all over the chicken making sure to add some to the cavity.
Heat oil in the dutch oven over medium heat. Brown the breast side of the chicken for about 5-8 minutes. Meanwhile dice the onion and add it to the dutch oven. Add garlic, rosemary, and the bay leaf. After the breast side has browned nicely, flip the bird and brown the bottom side for another 5-8 minutes. Finally, cover the dutch oven with aluminum foil and place the lid on that to ensure a good seal. Place in the oven for approx 1-1.5 hrs until desired tenderness.
Once cooked, you will see lots of liquid released by the cooking process. Remove dutch oven from oven, remove the chicken, set it aside, and cover loosely with foil. Strain the liquid from the dutch oven through a strainer and skip off the fat. Add any drippings that have come off the resting chicken to the strained liquid or jus. At this point you can season the jus to taste and serve with the chicken.

Update: If you have a convection oven with some sort of "speed bake" technology, then its better to set the temp to 225F and use that feature. I also increased the salt content to a full tablespoon. I found that a bit extra salt helped to bring out the flavors even more.