There are few things in life more welcoming than the scent of a roast chicken, it has to be the ultimate comfort food, the sort of food that brings people together around the table.
This recipe for one pot chicken is good-mood food, and good-mood cooking, too. You just throw everything in the pan and let it roast away merrily. A wonderfully simple way to honor a whole bird.
With classic flavours of cider, cream and fennel this is a real crowd-pleasing recipe.
1 Whole Properly Free Range Chicken
1 can of Devon Red Cider
500ml double cream
2 heads of fennel, cut into wedges
2 onions cut, quartered
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 tsp of lard or goose fat
Pure sea salt
Preheat a fan oven to 210C.
Take a good sized cast iron pot with a lid and place the quartered onions, fennel and chopped garlic in the bottom and dollop a little fat over.
Place the chicken on top of the vegetables and give everything a good season with some pure sea salt. Put the whole dish into the oven for 15 minutes, until the skin turns golden brown.
Remove from the oven and turn the temperature down to 180C. Pour the cider into the dish and place back in the oven for 20 minutes with the lid on.
After 20 minutes, remove the dish from the oven and add the cream. Put the lid back on and place back in the oven for a further 5 minutes.
Remove the dish from the oven, take out the chicken and leave to rest on a carving board for at least 10 minutes. Place the lid back on the dish containing the sauce and leave somewhere warm while the chicken rests. Carve the chicken and pour over the onions, fennel and creamy cider sauce.