Wednesday, 2 March 2011

One Pot Roast Chicken AKA Saddened Chicken

I first saw this recipe on Belleau Kitchen and craved the dish immediately not only for the completely droolsome ingredients, but after reading the details, the ease of preparation and cooking.

Its from Nigella's book Kitchen and is named 'My Mother's Praised Chicken" she says "This may well be -- indeed is -- the smell, the taste, the dish that says "family" to me and my siblings, and brings our long-absent mother back to the kitchen and the table with us."

This is my version, I'm starting to love the foodie recipes and thought I would do my own faves from time to time

You can check out Nigella's version just search the title on Google. Its a throw or chuck it all in recipe with amazing results and taste.

My first attempt was not so easy brought a touch of my renowned death defying style of cooking as Chris calls it.
I browned the chicken and it did get a little ungracious and began to spit hot fat at me. I donned my apron, allowed the spitting for a while and once browned I started the next easy stage "Chuck in a glass of wine" 

Only the wine and hot fat ruder still, erupted into a geyser like fountain. Old Faithful would have been proud to call the mini volcano his son! The fat did a nice three feet radius of my kitchen including the ceiling and cooker hood, thank goodness the hood took the main hit. I meanwhile, retreated to a corner and held up my Crafond pan lid and waited for it to abate. 

After, I went back  to gain control and carried on with the easy prep of adding all the ingredients and cooking.

So my tip is, after browning the chicken, allow the fat to cool.  Or spend an hour cleaning fat and wine stains up, not recommended for a lazy Sunday afternoon meal.

Why do chefs never show these disasters?

(AKA saddened Chicken)

1 whole chicken
4 cloves garlic (I use 6)
1 celery stick per person
2-3 leeks
1 carrot per person
1/4 onion (I use a whole onion)
1 glass of white wine I used rose its fab
Celery leaves
Fresh thyme
Flat leafed parsley ( I omitted)
Own additions a leek, mange tout, anything you have really.
I also decided to add homemade chicken stock as the first one I made  needed a little more flavour, sorry Nigella. Veg stock would be as good.


First  crack the breastbone of the chicken, this flattens the bird so you can brown it properly. Place both hands over the breast bone and lean on the chicken till it snaps. I am small in stature Chris affectionately calls me 2ft1 and I am a bit rubbish at this so mine is deflated more than flattened. Hence the 'AKA Saddened' title. 

All the ingredients lined up waiting to go.

Add some oil to a large ovenproof casserole pot or fry pan that's (I use a Crafond from Perfect Pans seriously the best pan I have ever used soon to be reviewed.) and brown the chicken over a medium heat for 2 or 3 minutes on each side

Now chuck in a glass of wine... I used rose I had to open it for the meal, usually this is a throw a glass in that needs using up. I am not that keen on drinking rose often and the half bottle of white wine was too good a grape.  

Chuck in the garlic cloves again whole and I added 6.


Throw in the rest of your veg, chopped or whole, now add anything else you think may work I have added parsnips, mushrooms near the end.
Season with  plenty of salt and pepper and then cover with water (stock) just up to the thighs. Nigella mentions nearly covering the chicken but I like the crispier skin.

Oven Ready

Pop into the oven, covered, on  Gas Mark 4 180C  for 1 hour, then remove the lid and let it brown for 30 minutes. This is the Nigella recipe timings but I cook for 90 minutes before removing the lid. You can add some rice, lentils  or pearl barley for a complete "one potter"  I find it lovely with creamy mash so leave it as it is.
Also if you just want to cook it this way for a pie and then liquidise the broth without rice you have an amazing soup.


  1. wow...yours looks amazing!...did you know that so far this has been my most viewed post!

    I'm sending out your hamper this weekend...bloody well had to keep waiting for items to be delivered and then what I had would go out of date!

    anyhoo,you should get it on Saturday!

    Dom x

  2. This looks awesome. I will need to give this a try. x

  3. Thank you both.

    Susan really do give it a try its heaven on a plate. So easy to do if you avoid the geyser!
    Dom mine is because I made the chicken a little sad I did not break it!!
    Seriously thank you.
    Woohoo for the hamper. x

  4. Looks yummy, I may try making it this weekend with the kids x

  5. This looks FAB, I love chicken and so do the kids so will be making this in the very near future :)

  6. It really is so easy to make, a wine for the pot and one for you!!!!

  7. Sounds delicious I must try it - I admit I always cook chicken for longer than most celebrity recipes say!

  8. this looks fantstic will have to try, but hopeful avoid all the flying hot fat.

  9. Good idea to use wine rose actually!

  10. hi, my mouth is watering!
    What size is your pan?

  11. Its a Crafond flattish with lid 30cm wide and with the dome lid 15cm high.

  12. That looks sooo good! I was intrigued to find out why it was saddened though, poor chicken! At least it gets to be surrounded by yummy veg and wine, that should cheer it up :)

  13. Only because I had not the strength to flatten it before cooking. Chris said I had saddened it!

  14. Your cooking disaster turned into a success. lol @ saddened. I'm sure Nigella has her share of disasters but she just pouts and puts her boobs forward, and nobody notices the rest.