ROASTED CHICKEN WITH BACON (for four)
a 3-1/2 pound chicken
olive oil as needed
freshly ground pepper to taste
6 to 8 bacon slices (don’t use thick cut bacon for this recipe, it won’t crisp quickly enough)
1 tablespoon finely diced shallots
½ teaspoon all-purpose flour
¼ cup white wine
½ cup chicken broth
½ teaspoon minced fresh thyme
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter
1. Preheat the oven to 450*.
2. Prepare the chicken for roasting. Remove the giblets from the cavity and either discard them or reserve them for another use. Rinse the chicken inside and out under cold tap water and pat it thoroughly dry with paper towels. Remove any excess fat from the bird, tuck the flap of skin at the neck end under and fold the wings akimbo.
3. Sprinkle a generous amount of salt and pepper inside the cavity and over the bird. Cross the drumsticks and tie them together, looping around the “bishop’s nose“, with kitchen twine. Place the chicken on a rack in a roasting pan, breast side up, put it in the oven and roast the chicken for 30 minutes.
4. Remove the chicken from the oven and drape the bacon slices over the breasts in a cross-hatch
pattern. Turn the heat down to 400* and continue to roast the chicken for another 50 minutes (the breast meat should register 170* on an instant read thermometer), until the skin is crisp and browned and the juices run clear when the meat is pierced with a sharp knife (See note below. If the bacon becomes too dark tent the chicken with foil). Remove from the oven, transfer chicken to a platter and let it stand 10 minutes while you prepare the gravy.
5. Discard all but 2 teaspoons fat from the pan. Set pan over medium-high heat and warm reserved fat. Add shallots and cook 2 minutes. Add flour and cook 30 seconds. Add wine and broth and simmer 3 to 4 minutes. Off heat, whisk in thyme and butter.
6. Serve chicken, drizzled with sauce, accompanied by champ and remaining gravy.
adapted from a Williams Sonoma catalog
NOTE: Cooking time must increase if your bird is larger than 3-1/2 pounds. Calculate between 20 and 25 minutes (depending on the heat of your oven) total cooking time for each pound, or until a meat thermometer registers 170* in the thickest part of the breast (do not touch the bone) and 185* in the thigh meat.
ROASTED CHICKEN WITH BACON REDUX: Curried chicken salad