Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Milk Bath

Apparently I am the only person who hasn't made this Jamie Oliver chicken recipe before. Granted, my friend David did tell me about it about at least two years ago, but I was like, "Gross. I'm not roasting a chicken in milk." Then when I mentioned it to my friend Karen this past weekend she was like, "Oh, I make that all the time. I told you about it!" OK OK I have a faulty memory, obvs! (Funny though, because Karen and David know each other. Clearly a conspiracy!)

I have to say, I really like this alternative to a plain roasted chicken. The very subtle cinnamon with the lemon and sage provides a really interesting flavor profile that makes me want to serve it with a jasmine or basmati rice rather than the mashed potatoes that Jamie suggests. But that's just me. I was skeptical of the milk bath to begin with, so what do I know?

Chicken Roasted in Milk
Adapted from Jamie Oliver

1 (4 pound) organic chicken
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter
Extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cinnamon stick (about a 1-inch piece)
1 handful of fresh sage leaves (about 12 - 15)
Zest of 2 lemons
10 whole garlic cloves, skin left on
2 cups whole milk

1. Preheat the oven to 375˚F. Place a medium, heavy pot over medium heat (just large enough to fit the chicken) and add the butter and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Season the chicken generously all over with salt and pepper.

2. When the butter is melted and the pot is hot, add the chicken, breast side down, and cook until golden, about 6 minutes. Turn the chicken over and cook for 6 minutes more. Remove from the pot from the heat and remove the chicken to a plate. Discard the oil and butter that is left in the pot. Keep the sticky browned bits at the bottom of the pan as they will provide additional flavor to the sauce.

3. Return the chicken to the pot with the rest of the ingredients and cook in the preheated oven for 1½ hours. Baste with the cooking juices about every 30 minutes. (Don't be alarmed if the sauce looks curdled. It's fine and tastes great.)

4. To serve, cut the meat from the bones and divide it onto plates. Spoon over plenty of juice and the little curds. Serve with wilted spinach or greens and mashed potato or basmati rice. Serves four.


WendyB said...

Not as pretty as Cleopatra having a milk bath ;-)

SPinneo said...

That does look beautiful. But "curdled" is one of those words that makes me want to run from the room.