chicken with 40 cloves of garlic - serves 4

250 ml extra virgin olive oil
1.8 kg organic free range chicken
250 ml dry white wine
40 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
6 sprigs thyme
6 sprigs rosemary
2 bay leaves
Maldon sea salt flakes 
freshly ground black pepper 
1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 180C.

Remove any clumps of fat from the cavity.

Heat a little of the oil in a large frying pan, add the chicken and cook on each side, until lightly browned all over.

Season inside the cavity with salt and pepper. Place 2 sprigs rosemary and thyme inside the cavity with 2 large strips of lemon zest. Rub the skin with the halved lemon

Place the chicken in a deep casserole only just large enough to fit, de-glaze the frying pan with the white wine then pour the contents of the pan over the chicken. Add the 40 garlic cloves to the casserole, pour over the oil and remaining wine, season with salt and pepper and add the remaining herbs.

Cover the casserole very tightly, sealing well with a double folded sheet of foil. Bake for 1 hour 30 minutes - do not uncover whilst cooking.

Remove the chicken and keep warm

Remove the herbs. Squeeze the garlic cloves out of their skins into the sauce and whisk to combine

To serve, carve the chicken and serve with mashed potato, a green vegetable and the sauce on the side

 

really simple but amazingly tasty chicken dish. don't be put off by either the number of garlic cloves or the amout of oil. both are necessary. The garlic mellows as it roasts in the oil, imbuing the finished sauce with a subtle flavor.