One of of our favorite liquor/poultry combinations is Spanish chicken with sweet sherry and garlic. The mixture of saltiness and sweetness along with herbs brings a boring roasted chicken to a whole new level. And with this recipe you won’t end up with dry chicken – guaranteed.
Basically any sweet sherry can be used, but if you can get a bottle of Pedro Ximénez, use that. It is very sweet (so sweet that you can serve it as a dessert drink!), but it works very well with the chicken, too.
Ingredients for Spanish Chicken with Sherry and Garlic
- 1 whole fresh chicken – pollo entero
- A few sprigs of fresh thyme – ramitas de tomillo
- A few sprigs of fresh rosemary – ramitas de romero
- 4 tablespoons of butter – mantequilla
- 1 lime – lima
- 4 cloves of garlic – dientes de ajo
- 1/2 dl (1/4 cup) of olive oil – aceite de oliva
- Sea salt – sal de mar
- Ground black pepper – pimienta negra
- 1/2 bottle of sweet sherry (use Pedro Ximénez, if available) – media botella de PX
Preheat the oven to 225 ºC (450 ºF). Put the chicken on a roasting pan. Cut some slashes to the skin so that you can season it under the skin. Rub sea salt generously on top of the skin as well as under the skin.
Next let’s make the herb paste. Mince garlic, thyme and rosemary and mix with the olive oil. Season with black pepper. Scoop the herb paste to the slashes and rub some on top as well. Put butter nobs in the slashes. They make the skin crunchy and beautifully browned when they melt. Cut the lime to 4-5 slices and place on top of the chicken.
Pour half a bottle of sweet sherry on top of the chicken and put in the oven. After 15 minutes lower the heat to 180 ºC (350 ºF) and scoop the sherry from the bottom on top of the chicken so that is fully coated. Roast for 30 minutes and repeat the coating every 15 minutes.
Let the chicken rest for 10-15 minutes before cutting it and cover with sherry once more. You can use the reduced sherry from the bottom of the roasting pan as a sauce when serving the dish. Roasted vegetables go nicely as a side.