On Sunday Alberto and I had our friend Neil over for dinner. I decided upon roast chicken for dinner, however for a bit of variety I chose a recipe from my new GBBO cookbook which involved a tasty chicken stuffing. (Well, the recipe says stuffing but rather than making something to stuff inside the chicken cavity the recipe calls for making a butter paste to stick under the skin. Still, I’m not going to quibble.)
It’s fairly easy to do and although the combination of ingredients may look odd they really work together. The salty flavours of the anchovies and pancetta seep into the meat and the butter helps to keep it moist. I served the chicken with roast potatoes, steamed kale, honey glazed carrots and cheese-crumbed sprouts.
1 medium chicken
For the stuffing:
50g of butter, softened
3 garlic cloves, crushed
3 pancetta slices, cut into strips
3 anchovy fillets, chopped
Zest of 1 lemon (keep the lemon!)
A handful of flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
Preheat the oven to 200
In a small bowl mash the butter together the garlic, pancetta, anchovies, lemon zest and parsley. Season well.
Untie the chicken legs and then, starting at the neck, slip your fingers under the skin of the breast to separate the skin from the meat Smear the flavoured butter alI over the breast meat, then pat the skin back into place. Halve the zested lemon, pop it into the cavity and then re-tie the legs.
Put the chicken in a roasting dish and season the skin with sea salt.
Pop in the oven and roast as normal.