Tuesday, July 19, 2011

fresh bread + dutch oven chicken

There's not too much to report these days at the old Oswald homestead. Perhaps our most notable triumph this week has been Sunday night's supper. I used my dutch oven for the first time to make a whole chicken we bought at the farmers market, and Sean baked fresh bread. Even though the temperature outside was well over 90, it made it feel like a nice fall day.

Sean with his loaves. This is right after he punched down the dough and separated it before the second rise.

And look at that! The bread tastes delicious, especially fresh. He made it with only whole wheat flour, so it's dense but very healthy.

The chicken was pretty easy, and I browsed a couple recipes online and then sort of winged it(no pun intended). I stuffed the bird with a quartered lemon, diced garlic, and some rosemary from the herb pot outside. Also, salt and fresh ground pepper inside and out.

Next that went into the dutch oven over some sliced carrots, celery, and onion with more rosemary. I remember sometime in my youth learning to stuff a clove of garlic under each wing, and so I did.

It went into the oven at 350 F for a little over an hour. I read online that the steam in the dutch oven would be very important, so not to open it during that time and also to put a sheet of foil over the top in addition to the lid to seal better.

When it came out it was very moist and delicious, though I did read one recipe that said to sear the chicken on the stovetop before putting it in to bake, and I think I'll do this next time. I missed the crispy skin. I removed the chicken to another dish and strained all the veggies out of the natural juices in the pot. Then I put the dutch oven over medium heat and stirred in some flour and cornstarch and a little chef paul's Poultry Magic, and it made a very savory gravy with a hint of fruitiness. Really made the dish in my opinion.

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