Nous ne sommes pas paresseux, mais pourquoi not cook comme les paresseux parfois? The title of this recipe translates as roast chicken for lazy people. Why lazy? Well, because once the chicken goes in the oven, there is nothing else to do other than take it out when it has finished cooking. It's an easy, fuss-free way to prepare an absolutely delicious meal. The recipe comes from Dorie Greenspan's cookbook "Around My French Table," and this post is an entry for French Fridays with Dorie.
Very easy to make. Get out your Dutch oven. Oil the inside and lay a piece of bread in the center. Rub the chicken with olive oil, season it with salt and pepper, stuff the cavity with fresh herbs and then place the chicken in the Dutch oven, on top of the piece of bread.
You might want to close up the cavity with an onion... a nice juicy onion which will add lots of flavor ...
And you might also want to throw a few herbs on top and around the chicken. Then you'll peel some carrots and potatoes and shallots, and throw them in the pot. Cut a head of garlic in half, throw that in there too. Put the lid on and bake at 450°F.
The finished product is wonderful! I placed the chicken on a cutting board on top of the stove and went to grab the camera. Before I had a chance to take any pictures, my family had attacked the chicken and the vegetables too. The wings were gone, some of the crispy skin was gone, one leg was broken off. Someone had the all ready placed the carrots on a serving plate... I made them stop and wait while I took took pictures of the bird.
Then we all had a delicious meal! The vegetables were roasted to perfection, the chicken was juicy and melted in your mouth, and the skin (which we usually don't eat) was irresistible. It was crispy and crunchy and tasted of the herbs and seasonings that had been rubbed all over it. I need to confess that I broke the paresseux rule by opening up the oven to take the lid off the pot. During the last 15 minutes of cooking the chicken roasted with out a lid so that it could get a beautiful golden color.
This is what was left after everyone was served. What's that stuff in the foreground, you ask? Remember the bread? Yes, that's the slice of bread that the chicken was cooked on. During cooking the bread soaks up juices from the chicken and as cooking finishes it turns crispy. Take the bread out of the pot and you will have delicious treat for yourself. It's the cook's reward! If you like the chicken liver, tuck it into the bird's cavity prior to cooking, and when it's cooked, top your slice of bread with it. So, roast chicken for les paressex comes with a little surprise at the end of cooking: some toasted goodness for the cook! I like that.