TAKES 2 HOURS 30 MINUTES, PLUS 12 HOURS BRINING
This is a great recipe for using up leftover roast chicken, cutting the time down to just 1 hour to make. Baked feta and roast Mediterranean vegetables bring sunshine and sweetness to this dish, and... considering they're all cooked together on one tray, this dish can even make for a sophisticated midweek pick-me-up.
Of course if you haven't got a roast chicken dutifully waiting to be gobbled up, you'll need a bit more planning, we recommend beginning the night before for an overnight brine.
In this recipe we give you one of several suitable cooking methods for our Label Rouge, Marie Hot Cornfed chickens. It's worth remembering that not all chickens are born equal and that the cooking methods for a Marie Hot Cornfed Chicken, may not be right for say our Fosse Meadow or Poulet Noir. If in doubt, consult one of our butchers. You can read more on the various poultry breeds available in our counters in our Journal on Picking Your Chicken.
If you have leftover roast chicken, skip down to step 5
1. The day before, place the chicken in a large deep pot. To make the brine dissolve 4 tbsp of salt for every 1 litre of water needed to completely submerge the chicken. Place in the fridge to brine overnight.
2. The next day, remove the pot from the fridge and drain the chicken, pat dry and leave to come to room temperature for 2 hours.
3. Pre heat your oven to 160C fan.
4. Season the chicken all over, including the cavity, with the salt, pepper and garlic granules, place half a lemon inside the cavity and rub the skin with butter and drizzle the olive oil. Place on a trivet or a bed of vegetables and pop in the oven with the cavity facing the back wall of the oven and slow roast for 2 hours. You will know if the chicken is cooked by pushing a knife in between the leg and breast meat, if the juices are running clear, it is cooked. Allow the chicken to rest for 45 minutes before slicing. (As stated above, this can be done the day before to save time on cooking and is a fantastic recipe for leftover roast chicken).
Begin here if using leftover chicken
5. Increase the oven temperature to 180C fan.
6. Place the chopped peppers, courgettes, cherry tomatoes, red onion, garlic and lemon halves on a lined baking tray, place the block of feta in the middle and drizzle everything with 2 tbsp of olive oil, season with salt, pepper and a pinch of dried oregano. Place in the oven to roast for 35 minutes.
7. In the meantime, set a pot of salted water on to boil and add in the pasta, cook until al dente then drain, retaining a good mugful of the starchy pasta water.
8. Once the veg has roasted, remove the lemons and transfer to a pot along with the warm pasta. Take the baked feta and place in a bowl with half a mug of the pasta water, squeeze in the juice from two halves of the roasted lemons and season with a pinch of salt, mash to combine, so the feta breaks down into a creamy dressing.
9. Stir the spinach, basil leaves, black olives and capers through the pasta and roasted veg, until the spinach has wilted. Pour in the lemony, feta dressing and toss to coat.
10. Shred the meat from the roasted chicken legs and stir through the pasta at the end to warm the chicken through. Season to taste with a little salt and pepper if needed.
11. Serve immediately, with a grating of parmesan and a scattering of chopped parsley. Enjoy!
For the chicken
• 2kg Marie Hot Label cornfed chicken
• Table salt for brining
• Salt and pepper, for seasoning
• 2 tsp garlic granules/powder
• ½ lemon
• Knob of butter
• 1 tbsp olive oil
For the pasta
• 250g tagliatelle (or pasta of your choice)
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• 1 red pepper, cut into large chunks
• 1 green pepper, cut into large chunks
• 1 large courgette, cut into thick disks
• 1 large red onion, cut into rough thick slices
• 200g cherry tomatoes, halved
• 3 garlic cloves, skin on, slightly crushed
• ½ block of feta cheese
• 2 lemons, halved
• Dried oregano
• 250g spinach
• 150g black olives
• 2 tsp capers
• Salt and pepper to taste
• Handful of basil leaves
• Handful of parsley, finely chopped
• Extra virgin olive oil
• Parmesan, for grating