Sunday, October 23, 2011

Roasted chicken, Ferran Adria style

G bought me a cookbook for my birthday, filled with lots of recipes for busy parents -- although I like to think it'd work for any busy person.
I'll be making lots of recipes from the book this week, and already I can tell you that doing a lot of the prep work the weekend before makes for an easier time during the week.
So, I've got a couple chicken recipes I'll be trying. The cookbook says start with rotisserie chicken, in an effort to make it even easier. But I find roasting chicken is so easy, and worth the effort.
This recipe caught my eye a few weeks ago, because Ferran Adria is a culinary genius. Make a recipe that is one of his, without all the "tricks"? Sounds like a good idea to me.
This one is a lot of work, but it's so, so good.

Adapted from Serious Eats (because I didn't bother with the pan sauce)

2 whole chickens, 4 1/2 pounds each
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 lemons
20 dried bay leaves
3 3/4 teaspoons dried rosemary
1/3 cup dried thyme
2/3 teaspoon black peppercorns
4 garlic cloves
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

Preheat the oven to 425°F. Use a pair of strong kitchen scissors to snip off the tips of the wings. Cut off the parson's nose (tail) of the chicken.
Put the chicken in a roasting pan, season inside and out with salt, then rub with oil. Finely grate the lemon zest over the breast and legs.
Cut the lemon into pieces and place inside of the chicken.
Put the bay leaves, rosemary, thyme, and peppercorns into a small food processor or blender and process to a fine powder.
Rub the herb mixture over the chicken and push the unpeeled garlic cloves inside the chicken.
Roast the chicken, breast facing down, for 25 minutes.
Turn the chicken over and roast it for another 35 minutes, until golden and cooked through.
Let chicken rest for 15-20 minutes before carving.

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