This week’s French Fridays with Dorie recipe, M. Jacques Armagnac Chicken (recipe published here in the New York Times), became Cognac Chicken in my household, simply because that’s what we had in our liquor cabinet. This is my second of Dorie’s roast chicken recipes and I have to say that the lady knows her chicken! This was possibly the juiciest chicken to have ever emerged from my oven.
Both her Lazy Chicken and her Cognac Chicken recipes call for the bird to be roasted with some root veggies in a dutch oven instead of a roasting pan, but this time she also throws in some cognac and covers the pot during roasting. And as unsensational as that may sound, Dorie’s method has been a revelation for me. I have always roasted chicken in a roasting pan, which allowed for much nicer skin, but which did not produce such juicy meat. And the cognac surprised me as well by not overpowering the other flavors. In the end it gave a light aroma to both the chicken and the delicious sauce, but it was not a dominant presence.
My only confusion with this recipe is that Dorie tells us that it should come out nice and brown. But how is that possible? If the top is on and there’s cognac steaming away in the pot, how does the chicken brown? Next time I make this recipe (and there WILL be a next time) I may try to take the top off for the last few minutes of roasting, or maybe even crank up the broiler at the end in order to crisp the skin a bit.
But regardless, this chicken was delicious. I served it with roast veggies and polenta. My husband proclaimed it to be the best chicken I’ve ever made. Thanks for a great recipe Dorie!