RECIPE OF THE WEEK FROM THE STAFF AT HIGHFIELD HALL & GARDENS, CEDITH COPENHAVER
This is one of those recipes that makes you stop and say “excuse me? Did you say chicken in milk?” Then most people will follow-up with, “thanks but no thanks.” It is, however, one of those recipes that sounds so crazy but is absolutely perfect!
Jamie Oliver's Famous and Fabulous Milk Chicken
1 (3 to 4 pound) whole chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
¼ cup unsalted butter
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small cinnamon stick
10 cloves garlic, skins left on
2 ½ cups whole milk
1 handful of fresh sage, leaves picked — around 15 to 20 leaves
Heat oven to 375 degrees. Season the chicken aggressively with the salt and pepper.
Place a pot that will fit the chicken snugly over medium-high heat on the stove, and add to it the butter and olive oil. When the butter has melted and is starting to foam, add the chicken to the pot and fry it, turning every few minutes, until it has browned all over.
Turn the heat down to low, remove the chicken from the pot and place it onto a plate, then drain off all but a few tablespoons of the fat from the pot.
Add the cinnamon stick and garlic to the pot, and allow them to sizzle in the oil for a minute or 2, then return the chicken to the pot along with the milk and sage leaves.
Use a vegetable peeler to cut wide strips of skin off the two lemons, and add them to the pot as well.
Slide the pot into the oven, and bake for approximately 1½ hours, basting the chicken occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and tender and the sauce has reduced into a thick, curdled sauce. (If the sauce is reducing too quickly, put a cover halfway onto the pot.)
To serve, use a spoon to divide the chicken onto plates. Spoon sauce over each serving. Goes well with sautéed greens, pasta, rice, potatoes, or bread.