Pot-roasted Chicken Veronique
This is a quite delightful Chicken Pot-roast Veronique: a plump free-range chicken braised with wine, vermouth and a hint of tarragon and grapes. Add to that some Jerseys and something green and leafy and you have a perfect Sunday lunch.
|1 x 3½-4 lb (1.6-1.8 kg) fresh chicken|
|½ oz (10g) butter, plus an extra ½ oz (10g) for the sauce|
|2 teaspoons olive oil|
|1 medium onion, chopped|
|1 fat clove of garlic, chopped small|
|1 tablespoon fresh tarragon leaves|
|½ pint (275 ml) dry white wine|
|¼ pint (150 ml) vermouth|
|6 oz (175 g) seedless green grapes, halved|
|1 level tablespoon sauce flour|
|salt and freshly milled black pepper|
|Need help with conversions?|
You will also need a cooking pot that will take the whole chicken neatly without too much room around it.
Start off by heating ½ oz (10 g) butter and 2 teaspoons olive oil in a frying pan and sauté the chicken in it till golden all over (but not brown) – the easiest way to do this is to use a pair of oven gloves and hold the chicken in place so each part of it in turn is cooked.
Now remove the chicken to a plate and add the onion to the fat remaining in the pan. Cook for about 10 minutes till golden and softened then add the garlic and cook for a further minute. Next transfer the onion and garlic to the cooking pot and place the chicken on top of the onions, and season well with salt and pepper. Scatter the tarragon leaves around the chicken, then pour in the white wine and vermouth.
Bring it all up to simmering point, then cover the pan and simmer on top of the stove very gently for 2 hours, adding the halved grapes 15 minutes before the end of the cooking time. After 2 hours, remove the chicken to a serving dish to keep warm (covered with foil). Now combine the flour and extra butter to form a paste and add this in small pieces to the sauce over a medium heat. Whisk well till the sauce is thickened and cook for 2 minutes while you’re carving the chicken. Serve with the sauce poured over.
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Often made with chicken, Delia believes this delicate recipe deserves a revival… and who could argue with that? A wonderful combination of cream, grapes and vermouth, it perfectly complements fish or chicken.
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