This has become my favorite way to roast chicken. Remove the backbone, smash the breast down, add a few strategic cuts, which helps it cook quickly, makes it perfect for a weeknight dinner! I love this new marinade I made up to make this recipe – Buttermilk Marinated Roast Chicken with Tarragon and Dijon Mustard.
This all came to life because of the US Open going on right now. Years ago, when my husband and I were dating, he took me to the Open, my first time. There, we had a drink with a napkin that had a chicken recipe printed on it for Dijon Roasted Chicken. It was sponsored by the Dijon mustard people and I remember the recipe called for making a simple sauce of whisking together melted butter, Dijon mustard and dried tarragon (we didn’t have fresh readily available in those days) and brushed it on chicken pieces to roast in the oven.
I made that recipe over and over again. It was easy and delicious. And it made me feel like I was really cooking something!
So with the Open happening now, I was called back to it and came up with this recipe – truly delicious! And you can marinate this chicken for 1 – 3 days. The buttermilk and other flavors will just sink in more and make the chicken only more creamy and luscious.
But first, it’s important to start with a great chicken! Buy it from a local farm if you can. It may cost a tiny bit more but it’s so worth it.
Up here in Columbia County, NY, I think Charlie and Kim of Second Chance Farm have THE BEST chickens around. Theirs have meaty breasts yet the dark meat is not tough and they have 3.5 lbs. in size, which is what I like.
Now in my younger days, if I didn’t have the exact right ingredients for a recipe, I’d freak – and go get them or send my husband to get them or not make the recipe.
Stupid. Really stupid.
So if you don’t have red peppercorns, don’t fret, just use black peppercorns. Improvise and most importantly, have fun and cook with a positive loving attitude.
Try this recipe, be sure to make it with love to nourish your tummy and your soul. The best part of making recipes to marinate, is that you do the work beforehand and then the night of your dinner, it’s easy-peasy. Nice!!
BUTTERMILK MARINATED ROAST CHICKEN WITH TARRAGON AND DIJON MUSTARD – serves 4
1/4 cup chopped fresh tarragon
1 Tbs. red peppercorns, crushed (If you don’t have red peppercorns, use black, no worries)
5 cloves of garlic, crushed
11/2 cups buttermilk (I use Kate’s)
2 Tbs. peanut oil
2 Tbs. Dijon mustard
3/4 tsp. fresh grated nutmeg
1 Tbs. coarse sea salt
1 3.5 lbs. chicken, backbone cut out and butterflied.
1 Tbs. peanut or grapeseed oil
¼ cup dry white wine for deglazing (optional)
Wash and dry your chicken. Using kitchen shears, cut along each side of the chicken backbone and remove it. Turn the chicken breast side up and press on the breastbone to flatten the chicken.
Using a sharp knife, cut partway through both sides of the joint between the thighs and the drumsticks. Cut partway through both sides of the joint between the wings and the breast.
Crush your peppercorns by placing them in a small Ziploc bag and smashing them with a heavy bottle.
Place the dried chicken in a large Ziploc bag and add the remaining ingredients including the smashed peppercorns. Massage everything together to combine and refrigerate for 1 – 3 days. When you open your refrigerator during that time, massage the chicken and flip the bag over.
On the day you’re ready to cook, remove the chicken from the refrigerator at least 30 minutes before.
Preheat the oven to 450°.
Set the chicken in a large skillet skin side up; spoon a little marinade on top and then grab the garlic, peppers and tarragon out of the marinade and spread on top of the chicken. Drizzle 1 Tbs. peanut or grapeseed oil all over the top of the chicken.
Set the skillet over high heat and cook the chicken until it starts to brown, 5 minutes. Transfer the skillet to the oven and roast the chicken for 30 minutes, until the skin is browned and the chicken is cooked through.
Transfer the chicken to a cutting board or platter. Let the chicken rest for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, deglaze your pan with the white wine. Boil for a few minutes on high heat stirring constantly until reduced in half. Pour the juices over the chicken, cut it into 8 pieces and serve.
You will LOVE this!!
I served this with a salad of sorrel, avocado, garden tomatoes, champagne vinaigrette and fresh chives.
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