Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Split chicken with herbs and white wine

This dish is from Marcella's Italian Kitchen, which is perhaps the least well known of her books, as far as I can tell from the internet. It seems to hold a special place in Marcella's heart though, as you get the feeling that she feels it never got the recognition it deserved, and contains some of her favourite recipes. She certainly seems happy in it, and free perhaps of some of the constraints she may have felt documenting the classic Italian in her first two books.

I was going to cook the chicken with onions from this book, but to be honest I got lazy and noticed that I had everything for the split chicken. The most fun part was chopping the chicken in half and then bashing the crap out of it with the chicken pan to flatten it.

I was then able to brown the chicken and let its skin go really crispy.

The recipe was a little different to other Marcella chicken recipes. There were unusual (for Marcella) ingredients, like cloves, and there were also quite a few herbs, which Marcella usually cautions us against. Other things that were different were that the garlic was not browned at all, the wine was not reduced at the start, and the heat was set to medium instead of low.

As usual for this sort of thing the sauce got really really tasty. The recipe called for the clear fat to be poured down the sink and I did that wistfully as I love mopping it up. But I did it. The final stage is to bake it in the oven for 10 minutes to get a parmesan cheese crust.

The result was a solid chicken, but I love other Marcella fricasseed chickens so much that when the sauce almost disappears I am not as happy. To me it was more like a baked chicken that hinted of a fricasseed chicken with sauce. The cheese didn't really do much for me.

So I don't think I'll be making this one again. My favourite Hazan chickens are: chicken with red cabbage (Essentials), and chicken with rosemary, white wine, tomatoes (Cucina). I'm also fond of baking the chicken with rosemary and garlic, which is also in Essentials but I use the recipe from Giulian Hazan's How to Cook Italian (which is very similar).

Other recipes I have tried but prefer less are two lemons (Essentials), rosemary and white wine (Essentials) and Bay Leaves (Cuscina).

Next time I'll try the chicken with smothered onions (and mash).

No comments:

Post a Comment