Roasted chicken is a very popular dish in almost every country in the world, including in Italy. I have vivid memories as a child going to my Nonna’s house in the countryside and having her Balsamic roasted chicken. This is a very easy recipe, and once you master the roasting process, you can conquer a multitude of delicious chicken recipes. The sweet flavor of Balsamic vinegar and red onions makes this dish uniquely Italian, and gives the chicken a tender and juicy texture.
You can also master your carving techniques when presenting the chicken to your guests, which will impress them and make your dinner party one to remember.
1 organic free-range roasting chicken
2 tablespoons fresh rosemary, finely chopped
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
1 tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil plus 2 tablespoons
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 large red onions, sliced into 1/4-inch slices
1 medium onion, halved
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/2 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken stock
Preheat the oven to 350°.
In a medium bowl, combine the thyme rosemary, garlic, salt and pepper and olive oil.
Rub the mixture under the skin of the chicken.
Generously salt and pepper the inside cavity of the chicken and place the halved onion inside.
In a roasting pan, drizzle 2 tablespoons of olive oil and add the sliced onions, toss to combine. Combine the wine, balsamic vinegar and chicken stock and pour over the chicken
Bake, uncovered, at 350° for about 2 hours or until a meat thermometer reads 165°, basting occasionally with pan juices.
Remove from the oven, cover the chicken with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes before carving.
Collect the onions and juices into a bowl and skim the excess fat.
Carve the chicken, transfer to a serving platter and pour over the sauce with the onions.
Influenced by memories in the kitchen with his mother and grandmother, Italian-born Francesco Romano is the man behind the food blog, Coco de Mama. He shares recipes and culinary knowledge with Mazzoni fans each month.
In America we’re accustomed to using supermarket-brand “balsamic vinegar” from Modena and Reggio Emilia (in the region of Emilia-Romagna) in our salad dressing (as well as other dishes). While many of the commercial brands available in the U.S. market are good to high quality, they are a far cry from European Union Protected Designation of Origin (PDO) “Aceto Balsamico Tradizionale di Modena” (Traditional Balsamic Vinegar from Modena).
The real stuff, which must be aged “for a minimum of 12 years in a battery of seven barrels of successively smaller sizes,” can be extremely pricey.
But the payoff is on the palate. Traditionally, it’s served sparingly, a drop or two on a shard of Parmigiano Reggiano.