Baking a whole chicken in a covered pot produces a bird with intensely flavored, juicy meat. Technique is key here.
The cooking times in the recipe are for a 4 1/2- to 5-pound bird. A 3 1/2- to 4 1/2-pound chicken will take about an hour to cook, and a 5- to 6-pound bird will take close to 2 hours. We developed this recipe to work with a 5- to 8-quart Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid. If using a 5-quart pot, do not cook a chicken larger than 5 pounds. Use the best chicken available, such as a Bell & Evans. If using a kosher chicken, reduce the kosher salt to 1 teaspoon (or 1/2 teaspoon table salt). If you choose not to serve the skin with the chicken, simply remove it before carving. The amount of jus will vary depending on the size of the chicken; season it with about 1/4 teaspoon lemon juice for every 1/4 cup.
- Cook Time : 1h 10 min
- Yield : 4 servings
- Whole roasting chicken - 1 ea., (about 5 pounds), giblets discarded and wings tucked
- Salt and black pepper
- Olive oil - 1 Tbsp.
- Shallots - 2 ea., large, halved and sliced thin (about 1/2 cup)
- Garlic - 6 medium cloves, peeled and trimmed
- White wine - 1/2 cup, dry
- Chicken broth - 1/2 cup
- Bay leaves - 2 ea.
- Thyme - 1 Tsp., fresh minced
- Butter - 2 Tbsp., unsalted, cut into 2 pieces and chilled
1. Adjust the oven rack to the lower middle position and heat the oven to 375° F. Pat the chicken dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Add the oil, shallot, and garlic cloves to a large dutch oven, and lay the chiken on top, breast side up. Cover and bake until thermometer registers 160° F in the centre of the breast, about 1 hour.
2. Tip the chicken to drain the juices from the cavity into the pot. TRansfer the chicken to a carving board ,tent loosely with foil, and let rest while finishing the sauce. Pour all of the cooking juices into a fat separator and set aside to settle, about 3 minutes. Pour the defatted juices back into the pot and stir in the wine, broth, bay leaves, and thyme. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, and cook until the liquid has reduced to about 1 cup, 5 to 10 minutes.
3. Off the heat, remove the bay leaves, whisk in the butter, and season with salt and pepper to taste; transfer the sauce to a bowl or gravy boat. Carve the chicken and serve, passing the sauce separately.