Anniversary Dinner

eggs for Garlic and Chicken SoupBack in September, while shopping at my go-to store, a sales associate who we’ve known for about a year inquired as to how long we’ve been married. Surprised at the answer, she remarked that we still regarded each other as newlyweds and would never have guessed that we’d been married so long. But it’s true! As of December 1 we were officially 13 years and counting, but apparently and happily so, not acting our age.

To commemorate our special day (as you can tell I’m a bit tardy getting this posted!) I wanted to honor my sweetie pie (sorry if this is making you gag) with one of his favorites- roast chicken. Not a week goes by that he doesn’t request it, especially since I’ve tweaked the recipe to taste bud perfection.  The secret is simple. Brine. Butter. Blast. The brine not only ensures a drippingly juicy bird, but it will penetrate deep into the meat to ensure it’s seasoned throughout, not just on the surface.  By buttering the outside and blasting it in a scorching hot oven, the skin turns a deep golden brown that is C-R-R-R-I-S-P-Y! I never ever went near chicken skin until this and now I blissfully risk 3rd degree burns going after it the minute the little birdie is out of the oven. Of course, there are a few other things along the way to pay attention to which I’ve noted in the recipe. And, yes, this is a soup blog not a roast chicken blog, but I feel kind of guilty and secretive not sharing something so unbelievably delicious. I promise your whole chicken world is about to change…and leftovers….M-O-I-S-T!….for days!

garlic for Garlic and Chicken SoupCertainly there are no shortages of perfect sides for your little beauty, but if you are looking for something a little special (maybe like for an anniversary) and out of the ordinary make Perigord Tourain while the chicken is in the oven. It’s a classic French garlic and chicken soup with a soothing lushness that makes your shoulders relax and your eyes close….an experience beyond taste that simply feels good. And although its origin is French, its easy preparation might mistake it for having American roots.  The main ingredient is chicken stock so be sure to use the best you can get your hands on, preferably homemade. It’s traditionally served (from what I read, not by experience…so sad) with bread which we found to be perfect for getting every last bit of the soup out of our bowls and into our mouths! Not to mention sopping up the chicken juices from the roasting pan…….

Perigord Tourain (Garlic and Chicken Soup)

Perigord Tourain (Garlic and Chicken Soup)

Slightly adapted from Tasting Table who adapted it from Sebastien Archambault, L’Epicerie, Los Angeles.

Don’t tell Chicken Noodle, but this soup may just be the next innovation in defending against cold & flu.

Ingredients

  • 8 cups homemade chicken stock
  • ¼ cup rendered duck fat
  • 10 garlic cloves thinly sliced (I make mine like matchsticks)
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup egg whites (3-4 eggs depending on the size)
  • ½ tsp kosher salt (more or less depending on the saltiness of your stock)
  • ½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

Instructions

  1. Heat the chicken stock in a saucepan until it reaches a simmer. Reduce and keep warm.
  2. Heat the garlic and duck fat in a large pan (I used a 6.75 qt Dutch oven) cook over low heat for 5-7 minutes until the garlic turns a golden brown. Stir frequently.
  3. Sprinkle in the flour and whisk constantly for 5 minutes.
  4. Add the warmed chicken stock, ladle by ladle, stirring to dissolve the flour.
  5. Add the salt and pepper.
  6. Bring to a boil then aggressively simmer for 15 minutes.
  7. Reduce heat to low, pour in the egg whites and stir. Cook for 1-2 minutes until they become white. They will look elegant and wispy when done.
  8. Taste for seasoning.
http://www.glassjarsoupcompany.com/2014/05/11/anniversary-dinner/

Brine. Butter. Blast. Roast Chicken

Brine. Butter. Blast. Roast Chicken

A recipe is only as good as the ingredients, so don’t skimp when selecting your chicken. For obvious reasons go organic, but also make sure it’s been air chilled vs dunked in a disgusting chlorinated water bath. Do these two things (and Brine. Butter. Blast.) and you’re guaranteed to have a chickeny chicken.

Ingredients

  • 1 whole organic chicken (4-5 lbs); air chilled if you can find it
  • 1 ½ cups kosher salt
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 16 cups cold water
  • ½ TBSP unsalted butter
  • 1 TBSP extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper for seasoning

Instructions

  1. In a 6 quart stock pot or large bowl, whisk the sugar and salt with cold water until they are dissolved.
  2. Place the chicken in the brine, breast side down. You may need to place a plate on the chicken to keep it submerged.
  3. Refrigerate for a minimum of 5 hours. I generally leave it in for 8 hours. I would not leave it overnight or the meat will get mushy.
  4. Two hours before you intend to roast the chicken, remove it from the brine, rinse under cold water and pat dry with paper towel.
  5. Let the chicken come to room temperature for two hours (1 hour at the least).
  6. Preheat the oven to 450 or if using convection, 425.
  7. Rub the butter and oil over the chicken skin and generously sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put the lemon and garlic in the cavity of the chicken.
  8. Place the chicken on a simple sheet pan.
  9. Roast for 45-60 minutes until an instant read thermometer placed at the thigh joint reads 165. Remove from the oven and cover with foil for 20 minutes to allow the juices to be retained in the meat instead of running all over the carving board.
http://www.glassjarsoupcompany.com/2014/05/11/anniversary-dinner/

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