I am forever in search of the perfect way to cook a chicken for the Sunday roast. I think I may have the answer (though I have said that many times before). This method involves first pot roasting the chicken in a casserole dish (or slow cooker on HIGH for 2-3 hours), then removing the bones from the meat and finish it off in a very hot oven so that the skin crisps.
The resulting flesh is incredibly juice because the pot roast method keeps all the moisture in, and by removing the bones (they just pull out), it makes the chicken very easy for kids to eat and the amount of liquid left over at the end makes the most astonishing gravy.
I cooked this for Mothers Day yesterday and my wife and three kids all gave it 10 out of 10. It is the best method ever. So far! I bought a free-range Packington chicken from the Ginger Pig at Londons Borough Market. At 14, it wasnt cheap, but well worth it.
1 organic or free-range chicken, weighing approx. 1.8kg
Bunch of herbs (I used thyme, rosemary and sage)
250ml chicken stock
250ml dry white wine
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Put the herbs into the cavity of the chicken. Add the stock and wine to a casserole pot (Ive got a Le Creuset). Cover with a heavy lid and cook in a low oven at 160C/Gas 3 for 2 hours.
2. After 2 hours, remove the chicken from the pot and allow to cool a little. Use your hands to pull the bones from the meat (they will come out very easily).
3. Line a roasting tray with tin foil and lay the boneless legs, thighs and breasts on it, with the skin draped over the flesh. Season with salt and pepper. Crank up the oven to 200C/Gas 6 and roast the de-boned chicken for 15 mins until the skin is very crisp and golden.
4. Meanwhile, put the casserole pot on the hob and bring to the boil. Reduce by half and thicken with cornflour mixed with water, if necessary. Serve with your favourite roast veg, such as potatoes, carrots and something green.