Glazed Chicken with Porcini and Crisp Potatoes
These cold weekends this winter have inspired me to cook more involved meals, and this one turned our particularly
well. It’s got a delicious sweet Marsala sauce that you serve with the chicken and potatoes that would be good enough to serve in a restaurant, or when entertaining guests. Even though it’s a simple roast chicken, the flavors are complex and earthy from the mushrooms. I served this with some broccolini sauteed in olive oil and garlic, and it made a really elegant meal. While you could skip the glazing step, it really makes the chicken skin nice and crispy, and flavors the drippings you use to make the Marsala sauce. It’s worth the effort. This recipe from Gourmet serves 4.
2 c dried porcini, oyster or mixed wild mushrooms ( 1 3/4 ounces )
1 1/2 c boiling-hot water plus 1/4 cup cold water
1/3 c olive oil, divided
1 1/2 t chopped thyme plus 3 whole sprigs
7 T dry Marsala, divided
1 1/2 T mild honey
1 whole chicken (about 3 1/2 pounds)
2 1/4 lb. large Yukon Gold potatoes
1/2 T all-purpose flour
1/2 c chicken broth
Preheat oven to 425°F with rack in middle.
Heat 2 T oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium heat and add mushrooms, chopped thyme, and 1/4 t pepper and salt and cook, stirring occasionally, 2 minutes. Add 3 tablespoons Marsala and boil until most of liquid has evaporated, then remove from heat.
Meanwhile, remove excess fat from chicken and pat dry. Season inside and out with a rounded teaspoon salt and 3/4 teaspoon pepper. Stuff cavity with mushroom mixture and tie legs with string.
Put chicken in a small (13-by 9-inch) roasting pan. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into fleshy part of a thigh (do not touch bone) registers 170°F, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, prepare the honey glaze. Add honey to mushroom soaking liquid in a saucepan with 3 thyme sprigs, 2 T Marsala, and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Boil until syrupy and reduced to about 3 tablespoons, 15 to 20 minutes. Discard thyme sprigs.
About 5 minutes before chicken is done, brush with all of honey glaze. If glaze begins to get too dark before chicken is cooked through, loosely cover with foil.
While chicken roasts, peel potatoes and cut into 1/2-inch pieces. In large nonstick skillet, heat 3 1/3 tablespoons oil over medium heat, then add potatoes, stirring to coat. Stir in remaining 1/4 cup water and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, 10 minutes. Remove lid and increase heat to medium-high. Add 1/2 teaspoon salt. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid has evaporated and potatoes are golden brown all over, about 20 minutes more. Transfer to a baking sheet (do not cover).
Transfer chicken to a cutting board to rest 15 minutes. Turn off oven and put potatoes in oven to keep warm.
Meanwhile, straddle roasting pan across 2 burners and add flour (or, if you don’t have a roasting pan that can go on the stove, drain dripping from the chicken, spoon fat off the top and put in a small saucepan. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring, 1 minute. Add broth and remaining 2 T Marsala, stirring and scraping up brown bits. Boil mixture until reduced by about a third, about 4 minutes. Strain if necessary.
Discard kitchen string from chicken. Scoop out mushroom mixture into a bowl, stir in potatoes, and serve with chicken and Marsala sauce.