We haven't been able to participate in French Fridays with Dorie for some time for a variety of reasons. But last Sunday, when we purchased a super-fresh chicken (processed the day before!) from GourmAvian, a local farm, and we realized that this week's FFwD recipe was for M. Jacques Armagnac Chicken, we knew the timing was just right.
This recipe, which can be found in Dorie Greenspan's Around My French Table, was soooo super easy. And while this incredibly satisfying, hearty, deliciously roasted chicken dinner (in one pot!) was roasting, the most amazing cooking smells emanated throughout our entire house. Dorie calls this particular recipe "un petite marveille" and we must concur. With about 15 minutes prep time and only an hour of cooking, the results were truly magnifique!
Now, a little anecdote about armagnac. Dorie's recipe obviously calls for armagnac (a distilled spirit made from three different grapes), and we do have a bottle. Here's the story. Back in 2007, Amy organized a school trip to Paris and Rome and Amy's mother, who had never been abroad before, came along. A very nice (read: expensive) bottle of armagnac was on our list of things to buy, but we had bought and packed so many bottles of wine in Rome already, we couldn't fit it in our luggage. So we asked Mom to pack the armagnac in her bag. Easy enough, right? Well, everyone's bags were checked and as we stood in line to be screened through to the gates in Paris, we realized...Mom has the bottle in her carry-on. And there was that little problem of no liquids more than 3 ounces being allowed on the plane. Oh the humanity!We suffered through that line trying in vain to come to terms with the fact that our gorgeous armagnac was going to be confiscated (and probably consumed!) by the airport workers, but miraculously, it wasn't! Huzzah!
So, although we do in fact have a bottle, a very nice bottle actually, of armagnac, we just couldn't use a cup of it to cook a chicken, as good as that chicken might be. So we used brandy. And the chicken was still incredible. The end.