Friday, April 19, 2013

Weekend feast = Chicken in Milk!

Perhaps you may have a little more time on your hands this weekend?  And perhaps you are feeling in the mood for something unique and different?  But perhaps you have many discernible critics in your household who many turn up their noses at the thought of a chicken cooked in milk.  Yes, milk.

This chicken though, should not intimidate or gross-out!  The milk is infused with the bright and fresh zest of the lemons; as well as the earthy sage, and the deeper spice of cinnamon playing in the background.  This technique has become one of my new favourite ways to roast a chicken, especially when you want the warmth of the oven on a cooler spring evening, and are in the mood to experiment with your traditional Sunday dinner.

Chicken in Milk
Recipe adapted from: Jamie Oliver 

1-2 kg whole chicken
course salt
freshly ground black pepper
olive oil
small stick of cinnamon or large one broken in half
1 handful fresh sage, leaves only
zest of 2 lemons I used a vegetable peeler, but you could also zest with a grater.
10 cloves garlic, skin left on
2 cups milk  - I used 2%
Optional  - to make the pan sauce into a gravy, add about 2 Tablespoons flour to 1/2 cup water, and stir with fork ,  or shake in tight lidded tupperware container, until there are no lumps, and add to sauce, whisking as you go, until the desire thickness of gravy is reached.  Add more water or flour according to your preference.

Preheat the oven to 375°F and find a pot for the chicken suitable for stove top and oven use, and that fits the chicken tightly. Season the chicken all over with the salt and pepper, and fry it enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pot.  Keep turning the chicken to get an even golden colour all over. Remove from the heat, place the chicken on a plate, and throw away the leftover oil.
(Jaimie says: "This will leave you with tasty sticky goodness at the bottom of the pan which will give you a lovely caramel flavour later on.")
Put your chicken back in the pot with the rest of the ingredients, and cook in the preheated oven for about an hour and a half.  Baste with the cooking juices every 20 minutes or so. The lemon zest will sort of curdle the milk, but the sauce is still delicious despite its appearance.
I added a mix of flour and water to turn the sauce into gravy, but the sauce on its own would be yummy as well to pour on top of your chicken or use a dipping sauce.
I served this delish dish with oven roasted vegetables and baby potatoes.


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