Thursday, November 26, 2009
Chez Pim's Roast Chicken
Can't you tell already that I like to peruse food blogs? This dish is a result of hours and hours of reading through more than 60 food blogs. I know, I know, I'm crazy sometimes. Pim from Chez Pim is living my dream life. Travelling all around, meeting all sorts of people (mostly awesome people), and eating extraordinary food. Who can say no to that?
Recently, Pim posted this roast chicken recipe which she learned from her friend, Laurent. One look at it and I decided that I had to make it!
So on Tuesday (Thanksgiving's eve's eve), I decided to make a little pre-Thanksgiving feast with this Roast Chicken, Christian Delouvrier's way as described by Pim.
I got two small cornish hens, about 3.5 lbs total.
I washed and patted them dry. They were so tiny, I couldn't believe it. I think they were the size of my hands and I'm telling you, I'm a tiny person.
The recipe is actually very easy and the ingredients are just garlic, salt, and butter!
Grabbing a fist-full of coarse sea salt (my fist-full is about 2 - 3 tablspoons), I stuffed that inside each chicken.
I can see all of those low sodium people out there with their eyes popping out of their heads already. Don't worry, this will keep the chicken juicy. Kinda like brining it while it's cooking. In the name of good food, I'm not afraid to explore the frontier of salt mountains!
Then came the garlic. I sliced a large garlic in half and stuffed each half inside a chicken.
Next was the thymes. About a tablespoon of dried thymes were dumped inside the chicken.
Using a stick of butter, soften and at room temperature, I rubbed it all over the chickens. All over! My chickens were still a bit cold the the butter didn't get distributed very well. Remember to learn from my mistake!
I had to spend a lot of time reworking and massaging the butter on the chickens.
I decided to put my chickens on a rack inside a baking pan so that the heat can get distributed evenly under the chickens. Into the oven they go and sit basking at 350 degrees F for about 40 minutes. Tra la la. At the half time mark, I remembered to make the chickens do a little 180 degrees flip.
Is it done yet? I'm hungreeeeee! After 40 minutes, take the chicken out and let it rest for 15 minutes. During that time, a glace must be made! The directions said to use 1 part water, 1 part soy sauce and a bit of butter. I decided to skip the butter and just combined 1/2 cup of soy sauce plus 1/2 cup of water plus 1 teaspoon of sugar (my mom's way of making a soy sauce glace).
So the soy sauce and water and sugar was boiling and simmering away on the stove until it's reduced to about 1/2 cup of glace.
After brushing the glace on the chickens, return them to the oven for another roasting session. This time, it's only for 15 minutes at 400 degrees F.
Is it done yet? Be patience, grasshopper. Remove the chickens from the oven and let it rest for another 10 minutes.
Can we eat it now? Yes, grasshopper, we can now carve it and dig in.
And that my friend, is what it means to eat slow food. I like how the recipe was told to Pim. So vague, "a lot of butter, a lot of garlic, a lot of salt...", yet it worked out so well. It reminds me a lot of how my mom tells me to measure things for cooking "a little bit of pepper, a stub of ginger, a lot of beans," etc.
Maybe because it's so vague that it's so simple. I bet you already had this recipe memorized. No need to remember how many cups and teaspoons, oh wait, is it teaspoons or tablespoons? Have fun cooking.
By the way, the chicken was delicious!