Recipe for the Zuni chicken
Updated: Jun 19
From The Zuni Café Cookbook
One 2 - 2¾ -pound free-range chicken
4 rosemary sprigs
4 tender sprigs of sage (or any other blend of fresh herbs)
2 teaspoons fine sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
One to three days ahead of the baking prepare the chicken. Discard the excess of fat, rinse it and pat dry.
Approaching from the edge of the cavity, with the help of your finger loosen the skin of each of the breasts and on the outside of the thickest section of each thigh, so as to create little pockets where you will shove the fresh herbs.
Season the chicken with salt and pepper, sprinkle a bit of the seasoning inside of the cavity. Cover loosely and refrigerate.
Preheat oven to 475° F (250°C). Drop the temperature by 36°/20°C degrees for a fan oven.
Ten minutes before baking, place a roasting pan barely larger than the bird in the oven.
Place the chicken in the preheated roasting pan. The original recipe requires the bird to be placed breast side up, then turned the first time after 30 minutes, then again after 15-20 minutes and, finally, allowing the breast skin to recrisp again for another 10-15 minutes. I place it breast side down and only turn it once after 30 minutes and then allow it to brown for another 25-30 minutes.
Remove from the oven, transfer to a large serving plate and allow to rest for at least 10-15 minutes.
Tilt the pan and skim the fat. Bring the juices to a simmer, making sure to add any juices that have collected under the chicken.