Rick Stein's Rotisserie-style Chicken
Before the butcher in Padstow became a fudge shop (there’s still a fish shop – mine!), Norman the butcher used to sell chickens cooked in a rotisserie and very generously he used to give me the cold fat and chicken juice that dripped down into the trough under the roasting chickens. I can honestly say I’ve never tasted a better glace de viande and I used it to enliven many a sauce, even fish-based ones. In France, particularly in Provence, they craftily put sliced potatoes underneath a roasting chicken, which produces an unforgettable sort of pommes boulangère. Sometimes they season it just with salt and pepper, sometimes they add spices and also onions, garlic and red peppers. Whichever way, this is simply chicken, slow-roasted in the oven with the vegetables underneath.
|1||clove garlic, bashed|
|1||free-range chicken (about 1.7 kg)|
|600g||potatoes, cut into 2cm thick slices|
|2 tbsp||olive oil|
|good pinch of||cayenne|
|½ tsp||dried thyme|
Preheat the oven to 150°C/Fan 130°C.
Put the lemon half and the garlic in the cavity of the chicken, then tie the legs together with cooking string. Mix the rub spices and seasonings together and blend them with the butter. Smother the seasoned butter all over the chicken.
Place the chicken on a bed of potatoes in a roasting tin and surround it with the remaining potatoes. Drizzle the olive oil over the potatoes and then roast for 2–21/2 hours. Baste the chicken and potatoes a few times during the cooking time. Serve immediately with the pan juices spooned over.