For this chicken a delicious paste of fresh herbs and fromage frais is pushed under the skin. This keeps the roasting chicken beautifully moist as well as adding a wonderful flavour. The pan juices are used to make a simple sauce.
1 chicken, about 1.35 kg, without giblets
½ cup (15 g) fresh coriander leaves
½ cup (15 g) fresh parsley
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 tablespoons unflavoured fromage frais or butter
150 ml dry white wine
salt and pepper
To servelemon slicessprigs of fresh coriander or parsleyPreheat the oven to 180°C.
Grate the zest from the lemon, then cut the lemon in half.
Hold the chicken on end in a small roasting pan and squeeze the lemon juice inside the cavity (make sure that the juice doesn’t run straight out of the other end).
Push the lemon halves inside the cavity and sprinkle in half of the zest.
Place the chicken in the pan, breast side up.
Very carefully ease your fingers under the skin, starting at the neck end.
Loosen the skin over the breasts and thighs, without breaking it.
Combine the herbs and garlic in a blender or food processor and process until finely chopped.
Add the fromage frais or butter, remaining lemon zest and seasoning, and process again briefly to mix.
(Alternatively, chop the herbs and garlic finely with a knife, then mix with the other ingredients.
) Push the paste under the skin, easing it along so that it covers the breasts and thighs evenly in a thin layer.
Secure the end of the neck skin by folding the wing tips under.
Cover the chicken with foil and roast for 45 minutes.
Remove the foil and roast, uncovered, for a further 1–1¼ hours or until the juices run clear when a knife is inserted into the thickest part of the thigh.
Baste once or twice with the juices in the pan.
Lift up the chicken, tipping it so that the juices can run out of the cavity into the pan.
Set the chicken aside on a carving board to rest.
Skim all the fat from the surface of the juices in the pan, then bring to the boil on top of the cooker.
Add the wine and bring back to the boil, scraping up all of the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
Boil the pan sauce for 1 minute.
Season to taste.
Carve the chicken into slices or serving pieces.
Garnish with lemon slices and sprigs of coriander or parsley.
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