- 1 x free range chicken
- ¼ cup olive oil
- pinch sea salt flakes
- 3 garlic cloves, peeled, cut in half
- 2 leeks
- splash white wine
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 1 L Pepe Saya Buttermilk
- 250g brussels sprouts, trimmed, halved
- 1.5 kg roasting potatoes
- 4 baby eschalots, finely diced
- 50ml white wine
- 50ml red wine vinegar
- ½ tsp freshly cracked white pepper
- 125ml extra virgin olive oil
- ¼ bunch fresh parsley, leaves picked, finely chopped
- ¼ bunch fresh tarragon, leaves picked, finely chopped
- ¼ bunch fresh chives, leaves picked, finely chopped
- ¼ bunch chervil, leaves picked, finely chopped
- Pre-heat oven to 220C
- Trim the green from the leeks and give them a very good wash. Cut in half lengthways to give 12 nice lengths and place in a large, heavy based baking tray to form a trivet to sit under the chicken.
- Place the garlic in the cavity of the chicken and rub the outside of the chicken with olive oil and salt. Truss the chicken with kitchen string to form an even shape so it cooks evenly.
- Place the chicken, breast side up on the leeks and drizzle with wine. On the stovetop, over a medium-high heat, bring the buttermilk to the boil, add the thyme and bay leaves and pour over and around the chicken.
- Place the tray in the oven with the legs towards the back and roast for 15 minutes. If the buttermilk curds are browning too quickly, cover with foil.
- Meanwhile, for potatoes, peel and halve potatoes lengthways. Place 1 potato, cut-side down, on a board and make thin, evenly spaced cuts at 5mm intervals, about two-thirds of the way through the potato. Continue with remaining potatoes.
- After 15 minutes, drop the temperature to 180C, add the potatoes and sprouts, spooning over those lovely pan juices and bake for a further 30 or so minutes.
- Turn the oven off and with the door ajar, leave the chicken in the cooling oven for an additional 15 minutes before carving.
- Meanwhile, make your vinaigrette by mixing all ingredients together in a small bowl.
- Put the chicken on a board for carving and give the roasting tray a small shake to coat the soft leeks and lovely vegetables with the chicken juices and golden buttermilk curds.
- Carve the chicken breast into thick slices. Break off the legs and wings from the bird and return to the vegetables and leeks. Place the roast potatoes, sprouts and chicken legs onto a platter and top with the chicken breast.
- Add the freshly chopped herbs to the dressing and spoon over the chicken. Allow to sit while you gather your friends and family to the table so the vinaigrette can mingle with the pan juices.
Recipe by Mike McEnearney