Recipe: Chicken in English sparkling wine with roasted grapes

The chicken can be substituted for turkey but adjust the cooking times accordingly. PHOTO: Dorset Fo

The chicken can be substituted for turkey but adjust the cooking times accordingly. PHOTO: Dorset Food and Drink photographer ( Richard Budd) - Credit: Archant

Somerset Life Chef of the Year Steve James shares an alternative to traditional turkey for the festive season

(Serves 6)

The sugars in the wine makes the chicken/turkey go extra golden in the oven and adds a fantastic flavour.

INGREDIENTS

1 large chicken (2-2.5kg)

1 bottle of Furleighs Estate From the Oenotheque 10 (or dry sparkling wine of your choice)

3 bay leaves

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1 cinnamon stick

3 cloves

2 cardamom pods lightly crushed

Good grating of fresh nutmeg

1l chicken stock

3 long strips clementine zest

1 clove of garlic lightly crushed

10 peppercorns

1 onion, roughly chopped

1 carrot, roughly chopped

1 stick celery, roughly chopped

Flaked Dorset sea salt

1 bunch red or black grapes removed from the stalks

For the gravy

INGREDIENTS

2tbsp flour

Flaked Dorset sea salt

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp white wine vinegar (optional)

METHOD

1. Bring all the ingredients to the boil, except the chicken, in a large saucepan, leave to cool completely. You will need to put the chicken into a tight fitting pot upside down (breast side down) and then cover with the liquid. Cover the pot and place in the fridge overnight.

2. The following day drain the chicken and reserve the marinating liquid. Dry the chicken completely with paper towel.

3. Into roasting dish place the onion, carrot and celery and top with the chicken. Sprinkle with salt and place in a preheated oven at 180C for 1 hour and 30 minutes.

4. Whist the chicken is cooking place the marinade liquid back into a large saucepan and reduce right down until there is about a small glass of wine left.

5. With 20 minutes remaining on the chicken add the grapes to the roasting dish and put back in the oven.

6. Once cooked remove the chicken from the oven and place on a board, cover with foil and rest for around 30 minutes till ready to serve. Remove the grapes from the roasting dish and keep in a warm place, but leave the celery, onion and carrot. 7. Place the roasting dish over a medium heat on the hob. Add the flour and cook until a thick paste forms, scraping any stuck on roasting juices from the bottom of the pan.

8. Add the reduce marinade and 700ml water and cook until it coats the back of a spoon. I like to add a tablespoon of white wine vinegar to my gravy as the wine can make it slightly sweet and then season with salt and pepper.

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