Pastured chicken, sweet peppers, sausage, fresh herbs and garlicky croûtons. One of my personal favorites..
Rustic Roast Chicken with Sweet Peppers and Sausage
For the Bone Broth (adapted from a recipe by Thomas Keller)
5 pounds chicken parts such as necks, bones, backs, wings and feet
1 gallon cold, filtered water
1 3/4 cups carrots cut into 1-inch cubes
2 heaping cups leeks cut into 1-inch pieces (white and light green parts only)
1 1/2 cups Spanish onions cut into 1-inch pieces
1 bay leaf
Keller writes “As with all stocks, the goal is to remove impurities while extracting as much flavor and gelatin as possible from the bones, and the maximum flavor from the vegetables and aromatics. You do this not only through gentle heat, but through gradual heat transitions as well; in other words, you don’t start with hot water, you begin with cold and bring it slowly up to heat”.
Rinse the chicken parts thoroughly under cold water to remove any remaining blood. This helps to ensure that the resulting stock is clear, not cloudy.
Put all the bones into a large stock pot and add a gallon of cold water, just enough to cover the bones. Slowly bring the liquid to a simmer and begin to skim as soon as the impurities rise to the top. Continue to simmer and skim until as much of the impurities have been removed as possible.
Add the vegetables and bay leaf and continue to simmer and skim for 45 minutes. This recipes produces a lightly-flavored, gelatinous stock suitable for soups and braising. For a stronger stock, simply continue to simmer and skim until the liquid has been reduced by 1/3 in volume.
Turn off the heat and let the stock rest 10 minutes to allow any particles left in the stock to settle to the bottom.
Ladle the finished stock through a strainer lined with a tea towel into a suitably large container, then transfer into quart jars set in a pan of ice water. Allow to cool to room temperature before transferring to the refrigerator to keep for up to 3 days.
For the Vegetables
Split a number of sweet peppers, Spanish onion and plum tomatoes in half lengthwise and place cut side down in a skillet or on a parchment paper-lined tray. Roast in a 375 degree oven until blistered but not blackened, about 30 minutes. Set aside and allow to cool enough to handle, then pull the skins off the peppers and tomatoes.
Coarsely chop the vegetables with fresh basil and oregano and set aside.
For the Chicken
Split large breasts and thighs into 2-3 pieces each and season lightly with sea salt and freshly-ground pepper. Melt a couple of tablespoonfuls of chicken fat in a heavy skillet. Add the chicken as soon as the fat is shimmering but not smoking, and brown well on all sides. Transfer chicken to a plate.
Cut 1-2 pieces of Italian sausage on a deep bias so that there is a lot of exposed surface area. Brown the sausage in the same pan that you used for the chicken.
Arrange chicken and sausage in a Dutch oven containing 1 cup of bone broth as shown below. Scatter roasted vegetables over the top, and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Season with salt and pepper and place uncovered in a 375 oven until the chicken has finished cooking, about 15 minutes.
For the Croûtons
Steep a clove of garlic in pastured butter for a few minutes, then toss in roughly-torn pieces of bread and fry until golden brown. Add chopped parsley and give the croûtons one more toss before setting aside.
To assemble, arrange alternating pieces of chicken and sausage on a plate and top with vegetables. Tuck in some croûtons here and there, then drizzle all with some of the roasting juices. Garnish with additional chopped herbs and serve immediately.
This post is part of The Nourishing Gourmet’s Pennywise Platter Thursday