On New Year’s Day, I craved something warm, nourishing and different. I stumbled upon the recipe for Jamie Oliver’s Chicken in Milk, and thought it sounded downright vile. The idea of combining chicken, milk, lemon,garlic and cinnamon seemed just wrong. Yet, a writer from a trusted source, The Kitchn, absolutely raved about it, claiming it was the best chicken she has ever eaten. So,in the spirit of “new year, new attitude”, YOLO, etc., I decided to cook on the wild side and give it a try. We are all very glad that I did. It was crispy on the outside, succulent on the inside, and the sauce was surprisingly clean, yet rich at the same time. The flavors somehow meshed together perfectly, and the only regret was not having a loaf of thick bread on hand to sop up the sauce the chicken was sitting in. Go ahead, step outside of the norm, and give it a try. It really is delicious!
Jamie Oliver’s Chicken Roasted in Milk: (unrecipe version, of course!)
Season one whole chicken ( about 3 or 3.5 pounds or so ) with salt and pepper, and brown it in olive oil in a large, but snug fitting pot that is oven proof. Remove the chicken, pour out the excess fat, and place the chicken back in the pot.
Toss in a handful of fresh sage leaves, 1/2 a cinnamon stick ( confesssion: I used ground cinnamon since I was out of sticks and it was just fine) 8 or 10 garlic cloves unpeeled, and the zest of 2 lemons. Pour in about 2 1/2 cups of milk, and roast in a 375 degree oven for about 90 minutes until the skin is crisp and the meat is cooked through. You can walk away and forget about it like I did, or baste it from time to time. Our sauce did not curdle at all, but you may expect to get a few curds.
When you are ready to serve it, pull the chicken off the bones with your gloved hands,( it’s hot!) or use a poultry sheers to cut it into pieces. Pour the juices over the chicken, and prepare to be wowed! You can squeeze the roasted garlic cloves onto bread, vegetables, or mix into mashed potatoes and enjoy!
photos: Glasshouse Images