Herb Roasted Chicken and Sage Stuffing
This is a great technique for roasting a whole bird. The chicken rests on top of a bed of stuffing so the stuffing gets the moist “in the bird” flavor without having to roast the chicken too long and drying it out in the process. For this particular dinner I removed the backbones of the chickens to use for making stock. You can skip this step and buy chicken stock. The roasting time stays the same either way.
For the chicken:
- 1-2 roasting chickens, about 4 lbs. each
- 1 T. herbes de Provence
- salt and pepper
- olive oil
Rinse the chicken and pat it dry with paper towels. Rub the chickens inside and out with olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbes de Provence. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight.
For the stuffing:
- 2 T. butter
- 2 leeks, white and light green parts, sliced thinly
- 1 small yellow onion, diced
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 1/2 C. white wine
- 5 sage leaves, minced
- salt and pepper
- 2 eggs, beaten
- 3/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
- 2 loaves of day-old Italian bread, crusts removed
- 32 oz. chicken stock
Melt the butter in a large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the leeks, onion, and celery. Cook until the vegetables begin to soften, about 5 minutes. Add the white wine and cook until the wine has evaporated. About 4-5 minutes. Add the sage and season with salt and pepper. Place the vegetable mixture in a large bowl and allow to cool down a bit. Add the eggs and parsley. Tear the bread into bite sized pieces and place in the bowl. Toss everything together and add half of the chicken stock. Continue adding the stock slowly until it’s absorbed by the bread. The stuffing should be moist but not wet. Stop adding stock when all the bread is moistened. Spread into a buttered roasting pan.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. When the stuffing has cooled, place the seasoned chicken right on top of the stuffing. Drizzle with a little extra olive oil and sprinkle once more with salt and pepper. Place the whole thing into the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Reduce the heat to 425 degrees and continue roasting for another 30 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven and tent with foil. Let the chicken rest for at least 15 minutes before carving.