Thursday, March 8, 2012

Chicken With 40 Cloves of Garlic

I really need to cook more with my dutch oven so I'm dedicating March to dutch oven recipes.  Up first is Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic.  This chicken was amazing!  It was juicy and full of flavor.  I poured the sauce over the chicken and mashed potatoes as if it was gravy, an herby, garlicky gravy.

Normally when I cook a whole chicken, it's pretty basic.  When making this chicken, I looked for something different and wanted to use my dutch oven.  When I found this recipe which includes lemon zest, herbs and garlic, I made my mind up right away.

Don't be afraid of the 40 cloves of garlic.  The garlic flavor becomes less intense and slightly sweetens as it roasts.  So delicious, I love roasted garlic!  By the way, 40 cloves is about two heads of garlic (give or take a few cloves).  Cloves will vary depending on the size of the head and size of the cloves.  You don't have to be exact, just use two good sized heads of garlic.

Here's a tip for peeling all that garlic:  smash the head of garlic to separate the cloves, put everything in a bowl (size doesn't matter), invert a second bowl of the same size over top and shake vigorously.  The agitation will peel most of the garlic for you in very little time.  If you need a visual, check out this video.

Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic
Adapted from Williams-Sonoma
Yield: 6 servings

1 (~4 lb) chicken, cut into 8 serving pieces
Salt and freshly ground pepper
3 Tbsp olive oil
40 garlic cloves (about 2 heads of garlic), peeled
1 Tbsp fresh rosemary, minced
1 Tbsp fresh thyme, minced
Zest of 2 lemons
1/4 cup white wine
3/4 cup chicken stock
3 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature, cut into pieces

Preheat oven to 400. 

Season the chicken with salt and pepper. In a wide Dutch oven over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Working in batches, brown the chicken, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate. 

Add the garlic to the pan and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the chicken, rosemary, thyme and lemon zest and stir to combine. Cover the pan, transfer to the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Baste the chicken with the accumulated juices. Continue roasting, uncovered, until the chicken is cooked through and the juices run clear when the meat is pierced with a knife, about 30 minutes more. 

Transfer the chicken to a platter; leave the garlic in the pan. Cover the chicken loosely with aluminum foil. 

Set the pan over medium heat and mash the garlic with the back of a spoon. Add the wine and cook for 3 minutes. Add the stock and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Whisk in the butter a few pieces at a time. Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Transfer to a warm gravy boat.  Serve the chicken immediately and pass the sauce alongside.

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