Brick Chicken with Lemon Caper Sauce…

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..topped with fried shallots over asparagus and roasted rosemary potatoes.

Deboning a Whole Chicken

I bought a fresh whole chicken from the Jianguo Morning Market and made my first attempt at deboning a chicken.  It was a lot
simpler than I thought it would be.  I used my new Japanese Global carving knife that we brought when we returned to NYC last May. We bought this knife as well as a sushi grade Global knife from Sur le Table. I need to be more careful and slow down when using these knives as I almost lost an index finger tip and a thumb tip on different occasions.  imageThe carving knife really made deboning the chicken easy, basically following down each side of the middle breast bone then continue down the side toward the middle joint of the thigh which then separates the leg from the thigh. imageFeel for the inner thigh bone then carve around it and separate from knee-joint. At this point you can leave the drumstick leg on.  This recipe called for separating the legs and comfit it in stock.  I separated the wings to be roasted separately.  The feet and the remaining carcass was used to make stock.

Chicken Leg Comfit

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Because the chicken legs take a little longer to cook the chicken legs were frenched (make an incision around the top of the leg joint to separate the tendons, clean the tendons of cartilage, then from the leg joint scrape upward to push the meat and skin up leaving the leg joint partially exposed) and comfit  for 1 1.2 hours simmering in chicken stock, garlic, rosemary and thyme.  Comfit chicken legs gives the dish a nice contrast of texture and taste from the same dish.  if you are not in a rush you can brick the chicken halves with the legs intact.

Fried Shallots for Garnish

Slice a large shallot and deep fry until 80% brown, remove from heat and the remaining 20% will brown from the residual heat of the oil, drain to a paper towel.

Roasted Rosemary Potatoes

Skin and dice potatoes in roughly 1 inch squares, then wash in cold water to rinse out the starch.  Towel dry the potatoes then coat them in olive oil, salt, pepper and other fresh or dry rosemary, then refrigerate over night. The next day the potatoes will still release residual water to the bottom of the bowl from resting overnight.  The removal of water from the potatoes helps roasting the potatoes faster and crisper.  Drain the potatoes, then roast in a roasting pan at 475 degrees.

Brick Chicken

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The recipe call for basically the deboned chicken halves cooked in a fry pan skin side down in searing olive oil skin.  To help unsure an even crispness of the skin of the chicken halves, a brick is used to weighted it down during the searing.  As you see the sides turn a carmelized brown, place an oven at 500 degrees until about 80% cooked.  You just want it to be cooked until the pinkness of the meat side is remaining on just he top layer.  Remove from oven, then move the brick and flip the meat side down to the pan and let it rest while the top layer of the meat side finishes cooking.

Lemon Caper Sauce

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For the sauce take the pan with the remaining drippings  add diced shallots and sweat them, then add capers, a knob of butter and half of a lemon squeezed.  When the sauce turn a hazelnut color, add the comfit legs to reheat the comfit legs.

Plating

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Once the potatoes are browned and crispy. use the same roasting pan and plate the chicken on top of the potatoes.  Add the comfit chicken legs,  then pour the lemon caper sauce over the chicken and surrounding potatoes. Top the chicken halves  with asparagus then garnish on top of asparagus with the fried shallots.

This dish was inspired by my father who made a similar version that he called laid back chicken. He deboned the entire chicken, stuffed it with stuffing, stringed it up whole and roasted it. He sometimes made this instead of turkey for Thanksgiving. This was one of my all time favorite dishes he made for us. I would always request this dish from father on special occasions. My passion for cooking was inspired by my father as he was the cook of the family and I would watch him prepare our family meals. I truly believe my path to Taiwan is because of my beloved father. 💕

This brick chicken recipe is from acclaimed NYC Chef Marc Forgione.

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