Saturday, September 08, 2012

Honey-Roasted Chicken with Herbes de Provence Gravy

This is the other recipe I saved from the Spring 2011 issue of Where Women Cook (where I also got the honey pie recipe). It had intimidated me at first, I’m not sure why; perhaps the thought of roasting a chicken and making gravy seemed too daunting? And then, the longer it sat in my recipe folder, the more daunting it became? But it turns out it was much easier to make than I thought, as most of the work is done in the oven, and you’re cooking chicken pieces, not the whole bird. And I can’t even begin to tell you how good this smelled as it was cooking! And this meal was fabulous! The gravy was wonderful, and the chicken was perfect, and the Engineer and I had to restrain ourselves not to eat the whole thing. And did I mention I think this was my first real chicken gravy?

The only modification I would make would be to perhaps bake the chicken in a baking pan, then pour the baking juices into a frying pan and make the gravy on the stovetop. Otherwise, you may take the frying pan (or skillet or whatever) and, thinking you’re clever, use your oven mitts as a mnemonic device to avoid burning yourself on the scalding-hot handle (like by putting an oven mitt on the counter directly underneath it and the other propped on the handle), but trust me, you’ll be the absent-minded cook who grabs the handle anyway. Ask me how I know. My next best recommendation, if you have an oven mitt that is entirely silicone (including the inside), is to slip that mitt over the pan handle as soon as it’s out of the oven, as in the picture below (too little too late, in my case, but the visual may help others!).

If you want, you could use boneless skinless chicken breasts, and just cook them a bit less, or roast a whole chicken instead. I served the chicken with sorghum-glazed baby carrots. Note that I’m sure it’s possible to make gravy with gluten-free flour or some kind of starch; I just didn’t try it here.

2 whole chicken legs
2 bone-in split chicken breasts
4 Tbsp. butter or margarine, melted
3 Tbsp. honey
2 tsp. sea salt (I used Murray River salt, which has smaller flakes)
2 tsp. herbes de Provence
Several grinds of black pepper
1 cup white wine
2 Tbsp. all-purpose flour
½ cup chicken stock

Preheat oven to 420 °F.

Rinse chicken under cold running water; pat dry.

Whisk the melted butter, honey, sea salt, herbes de Provence, and black pepper in a medium-sized mixing bowl.

Place the chicken pieces in a large cast-iron skillet. Pour sauce over chicken, and toss with tongs to coat.

Leave chicken skin side up. Pour white wine into the pan.

Place skillet in oven. Cook for 45 minutes.

Remove pan from oven. Using tongs, transfer the chicken onto a separate plate (I tented mine with aluminum foil to keep it warm).

Return skillet to stovetop. (Alright, so here, slip your indestructible silicone oven mitt over the skillet’s handle, or just pour out all the juices into another skillet and go from there.) Cook remaining juices over medium high heat for 3 minutes until some of the liquid is cooked off.

Add flour to skillet; stir constantly for 1 minute.

Add the chicken stock; stir constantly for a couple of minutes until it reaches a thickened gravy-like consistency.

Drizzle gravy over the reserved chicken pieces and serve.

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