It’s such a wheeze. Blog posting, I mean. All you have to do is have an idea and start typing. Easy. It’s so simple, particularly when you have a dish called Chicken and 40 Cloves of Garlic. It practically writes itself. All you have to do is type out the various ’40’ related ideas that present themselves and fling in a simple recipe. What could be easier?
Well actually, that is not the whole truth. Because just like Ali Baba, somebody has whispered “Open Sesame”, snuck into my mind, and stolen all the ’40’ ideas. So, I will have to work at this a bit. Let’s start with the ingredients.
- 8 chicken legs
- 8 chicken thighs
- 40 cloves of garlic
- 4 stalks of celery
- A handful of tarragon
- 2 onions
- A glass of Vermouth
- Half a nutmeg
- Salt and pepper to season
- 4 cubes of highly concentrated chicken stock, if you have made some. (Optional).
- A loaf of sourdough bread to accompany
Back in the 1930s, there used to be a mendicant in Dublin called Johnny Forty Coats. If you can find way to work him into this, you are doing better than me.
The first thing to do is to separate out the cloves. Then slice up the onions and celery.
Brown the chicken pieces in the bottom of a casserole.
Remove the chicken when it is nice and brown. Add the celery and onion. Place the chicken on top, season and pour in the Vermouth.
Place in the 40 cloves of garlic and chicken stock (if using).
Sprinkle it with the tarragon and grate over the nutmeg.
Place a tight-fitting lid (add a layer of aluminium foil) and place it in the oven for 40 minutes (yes, 40) at 190ºC. Toast the sourdough, pour some nice wine. Serve and enjoy this deliciousness.
The garlic is best squeezed onto the bread and then spread like a thick layer of butter. Despite my complete failure to get even a half decent forty related theme going, this dish is delicious. You could even say it was fortifying. Give it a go.