This is where you can accuse me of my last 3 post being from the new Ina Garten cookbook. You would be very accurate in doing so, actually. I can’t help it. I am obsessed with it. There are easy, amazing recipes, with options to make it ahead (which I take advantage of.) If you are looking for a gift for a foodie, this cookbook is it, or just direct them to my blog, because I am not stopping with this cookbook. It has gotten me back into the swing-ish of blogging, I just can’t wait to share the recipes with you guys.
On to the chicken. This chicken is simple and flavorful, nothing out of the ordinary, just good ingredients. The skin gets a beautiful golden color and the salad is the perfect compliment. If you want me to be honest though, it’s all about the bread, bout the bread, no joking. (Did you catch that?) The bread is so crispy, its almost burnt, and makes the most delicious croutons to add to your salad.
This meal is fancy enough for guests and you can spend your time mingling with your guests instead of in the kitchen.
Ingredients: Chicken & Bread: 1 Whole Chicken, 4-4.5 lbs. 4 sprigs of Thyme, fresh 2 Garlic cloves, large and smashed flat 1 Lemon, quartered 2 teaspoons of fine Sea Salt 1/2 teaspoon of Black Pepper 3-4 slices of Country Bread, sliced 3/4 inch thick Olive Oil Salad: 1/4 cup of White Wine Vinegar or Champagne 1 teaspoon of Dijon Mustard 3 cloves of Garlic, minced 1 teaspoon of Salt 1/2 teaspoon of Black Pepper 1/4 cup of Olive Oil 2 Green Onions, minced green and white parts 2 tablespoons of dried Cranberries 6 cups of Baby Arugula, lightly packed
First, place the chicken in a baking dish. Run your fingers underneath the breast skin to loosen it, but not break it. Divide the thyme sprigs and garlic cloves and place under each breast. Remove the giblets and place the quartered lemon in the cavity. Sprinkle with sea salt and black pepper. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 24 hours.
When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 500 degrees. Prepare an iron skillet by placing the bread at the bottom, covering the entire pan. Place the chicken on the bread, tucking the wings under and crossing the legs. Drizzle liberally with olive oil.
Roast for 30 minutes, turn it over with tongs, and roast for 15 more minutes. Wrap the skillet tightly with aluminum foil (while wearing pot holders.) Let sit for 30 minutes and start making your salad.
In a large bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, garlic, and salt and pepper. Drizzle in the olive oil while whisking. Stir in the onions and cranberries. Toss in the arugula and coat well. Place the salad on a shallow platter and set aside.
When the 30 minutes have passed, remove your chicken to a plate. First, chop the bread into croutons and place on top of the salad. Now, carve the chicken into pieces and place on the salad. Spoon the juices on top and sprinkle with sea salt.
Happy Cooking, The Barbee Housewife Source: Ina Garten: Make It Ahead: A Barefoot Contessa Cookbook