Last Saturday I was in Helper with Charley, so we had some friends over and I made Lemon Chicken which is rapidly becoming my signature dish.
This is a family recipe that was never formally written down with measurements or detail instructions…it was just passed on almost through osmosis. It's the kind of recipe you just have to feel (and taste) your way through. But here’s an approximation:
- 1 Whole chicken, cut into pieces (and I mean the WHOLE chicken. DO NOT try to make this with pathetic skinless, boneless white meat…that would be bad)
- Olive oil – enough to coat all the chicken pieces
- Juice of 4 lemons
- 2 to 4 Sprigs of fresh rosemary, chopped (it must be fresh!)
- 2 to 3 Cloves of garlic, chopped
- 1/4 Cup sweet vermouth
- Salt and pepper to taste
Set the oven to broil. Coat the chicken pieces with olive oil, garlic, salt, and pepper, and place skin side up in a roasting pan. Place the pan in the middle of the oven, and cook for about 10 minutes. After 10 minutes, flip the chicken over and cook for another 10 minutes…then flip again, but this time, before you put it back in the oven pour half the lemon juice over the chicken and top with half the rosemary. Cook for 10 more minutes, flip and add the remaining juice and rosemary. Keep cooking and flipping, until the chicken is cooked and crispy. The whole process should take 40 to 50 minutes.
Once the chicken is cooked remove it from the pan and set it aside. Place the pan on the stove top, on two burners (both on medium heat). Add the sweet vermouth. With a wooden spoon stir the juices and vermouth, scrapping the yummy caramelized bits, until it begins to bubble. Then put the chicken pieces back in the pan and coat them in the gravy…and fini!
Serve it in the pan with a loaf of good crusty bread (you’ll need the bread for soaking up the gravy, which is the best part).