Blissfully Delicious

Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic

One of my favorite weekend meals to make in the cooler months is a roast chicken. Not only that I love the delicious aroma of chicken roasting in the oven, all I need is throwing in some root vegetables and potatoes on the side, and I have a complete meal which will last me at least a couple of days. On weekends that I don’t have as much time, I turn to recipe like this. While the name may sound scary (forty cloves of garlic?), trust me that these garlic cloves really turn sweet once cooked and roasted with the sauce. Peeling all of the garlic cloves take a little time, so when I know that I am going to make these, I would peel all of the garlic a couple of days ahead of time, and store them in the refrigerator. When I am ready to cook them, I have the garlic ready to go. I really LOVE this sauce, so I make at least double and distribute it generously on the chicken pieces. I also love the sauce as a mix in to my mashed potatoes. I have also enjoyed this recipe best only using dark pieces from organic chicken (they tend to run a little smaller); the meat is a lot more flavorful and succulent that way.  Now if I could only cook this in a crock-pot, I’d be in heaven!

3 whole heads garlic, about 40 cloves
2 (3 1/2-pound) chickens, cut into eighths
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons good olive oil
3 tablespoons Cognac, divided
1 1/2 cups dry white wine
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons heavy cream

Separate the cloves of garlic and drop them into a pot of boiling water for 60 seconds. Drain the garlic and peel. Set aside.

Dry the chicken with paper towels. Season liberally with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat the butter and oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. In batches, saute the chicken in the fat, skin side down first, until nicely browned, about 3 to 5 minutes on each side. Turn with tongs or a spatula; you don’t want to pierce the skin with a fork. If the fat is burning, turn the heat down to medium. When a batch is done, transfer it to a plate and continue to saute all the chicken in batches. Remove the last chicken to the plate and add all of the garlic to the pot. Lower the heat and saute for 5 to 10 minutes, turning often, until evenly browned. Add 2 tablespoons of the Cognac and the wine, return to a boil, and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Return the chicken to the pot with the juices and sprinkle with the thyme leaves. Cover and simmer over the lowest heat for about 30 minutes, until all the chicken is done.

Remove the chicken to a platter and cover with aluminum foil to keep warm. In a small bowl, whisk together 1/2 cup of the sauce and the flour and then whisk it back into the sauce in the pot. Raise the heat, add the remaining tablespoon of Cognac and the cream, and boil for 3 minutes. Add salt and pepper, to taste; it should be very flavorful because chicken tends to be bland. Pour the sauce and the garlic over the chicken and serve hot.

Adapted from Barefoot in Paris


19 Responses to “Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic”

  1. #
    Carrie — November 12, 2011 at 8:59 am

    Wow this sounds so good. It’s cold here today and this is the kinda of meal that I need on a cold day! I have seen similar recipes for garlic chicken this way… I think I need to go buy a whole lotta garlic this weekend!!

  2. #
    Geni — November 12, 2011 at 10:41 am

    I’ve always wondered about this famous recipe. I am so glad you posted it because now I really want to try it. I love the idea if mixing some of the sauce into mashed potatoes. Heaven!

  3. #
    Caroline — November 12, 2011 at 3:22 pm

    Oh my, oh my. Could it really be true? 40 cloves of garlic? I’m all about it! This sounds absolutely divine. Love the addition of Cognac. x

  4. #
    Cooking Gallery — November 12, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    Wow, with 40 cloves of garlic…!! I am sure this tastes heavenly, but I think it would only eat when I don’t have to go to work the next day ;). But the chicken really looks totally delicious!!

  5. #
    Karly — November 12, 2011 at 6:55 pm

    I bet that makes your whole house smell delicious!

  6. #
    Reem | Simply Reem — November 12, 2011 at 10:07 pm

    You know when I first heard of this recipe I was not sure how can any recipe take that amount of garlic. But after I tried it, I was completely hooked.
    Yours look so delicious girl…
    I am now so craving this…

  7. #
    Raymund — November 13, 2011 at 2:26 am

    Wow I love this, Filipinos use a lot of garlic in our dishes so this will be a hit in our tables

  8. #
    Tracey — November 13, 2011 at 8:23 am

    I have this dish on my menu for this week! I think I’m using the Cook’s Illustrated recipe, but this one looks great too!

    • h2babe — November 14th, 2011 @ 9:06 pm

      I’d have to go check out your blog post on that – and see what the difference is :)

  9. #
    Pure Complex — November 13, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    I completely agree, theres nothing like a roast chicken for dinner. And this Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic recipe is something I can’t wait to make. Love this

  10. #
    Courtney — November 13, 2011 at 8:52 pm

    I’d be intimidated to try all 40 cloves, but I do love me some garlic… so maybe I’d just go for it. It does sound good!

    • h2babe — November 13th, 2011 @ 9:43 pm

      The garlic really turn soft and sweet after they are cooked… don’t let the title intimidate you!!

  11. #
    Salad in a Jar — November 13, 2011 at 9:52 pm

    The sauce does sound really good–with mashed potatoes as you suggested, of course. I’m afraid my hands might smell like garlic for a month so will probably buy the peeled stuff at the store.

  12. #
    Stefanie — November 13, 2011 at 11:36 pm

    Mmmm garlicky goodness :) This chicken looks divine!

  13. #
    Amy — November 14, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    Have you ever tried peeling garlic like this:

    • h2babe — November 15th, 2011 @ 8:46 pm

      Yes I have!! I have done it with peaches as well ;-)

  14. #
    Nami | Just One Cookbook — November 15, 2011 at 1:42 am

    With 40 garlic written in title I’m so interested to give this a try. I don’t think it’s too garlicky from the way you describe it and cooking with all the other ingredients. I’d love the sauce for sure!

  15. #
    Mary — July 21, 2012 at 7:14 pm

    I’ve made this once so far, and though some of the people in the house were hesitant about the 40 cloves of garlic, there was not a single speck of leftovers! Definitely will be making this again and again!

    • Yudith — July 22nd, 2012 @ 5:05 pm

      Awesome! Glad you enjoyed it. A lot of people are hesitant to try after hearing the amount of garlic needed. But they turn really soft and sweet :)

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