Chicken with Forty Cloves of Garlic

Total Time:
1 hr 40 min
35 min
1 hr 5 min

6 servings

  • 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.

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Pairs Well With

Rich, buttery white wine

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4.6 484
Tried first time tonight. CRAZY DELICIOUS!!! MAKE THIS RECIPE!!!! My husband's top 2 chicken recipes. Used only dark meat. Straightforward instructions. Served with boiled potatoes & green beans, so delicious!! Agree with another reviewer who had a great idea to double the liquids. Next time I will do the same, I'd love even more sauce. Roasted garlic is so sweet, I wished I made double the garlic cloves!! DELICIOUS.  (Le Creuset made the difference again! Best splurge for kitchen gear). THANK YOU INA item not reviewed by moderator and published
One of the best chicken recipes I've made. Thanks Ina! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I've made this recipe several times and it is FANTASTIC!! I served it the first time with crimini mushrooms sauteed in butter, olive oil, salt and pepper on the side. It was like a match made in heaven! Make sure you have lots of French bread for dunking and spreading with the roasted garlic cloves! Making this tomorrow night, can't wait! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This is one of my husbands favorite recipes. I use all chicken thighs instead of whole chickens. I make 1/2 the recipe which usually corresponds to about 4 - 5 thighs. Spread the cooked garlic cloves on slices of crusty bread, and use the bread to mop up the sauce. Delicious! item not reviewed by moderator and published
I haven't made this yet as I have a couple of questions. I have never drank or cooked with Cognac so I have no idea what it would compare to. Neither of us drink dry white wine either, so could someone tell me a good but not too expensive one to use? Also, is there different kinds of Cognac? item not reviewed by moderator and published
Another hit in this home. I cut up an 8# oven stuffer roaster into 12 pieces, used 50 cloves of garlic and doubled the liquids. Cooked for 1 hour, low and slow,only had to season with a sprinkle of salt after I thickened it. The sweet garlic really shines through. I did use Brandy in lieu of Cognac. item not reviewed by moderator and published
I am surprised to see this get such a good rating. It was a lot of work for a so-so result. I followed the recipe exactly and paired it with the Moroccan couscous and while neither was necessarily bad it wasn't that good either. I'm normally a big fan of Ina's recipes but this one missed the mark for me. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Fantastic!!! I was out of white wine, so subbed with extra dry vermouth, and had to use regular brandy instead of cognac, but if you season correctly, it is terrific!! I've meant to make this for years, but until i saw pre-peeled garlic cloves, was too time pressed to try. I made this in less than an hour, on a weeknight!!! Definite keeper! <3 INA! item not reviewed by moderator and published
This recipe was okay... I think hacking a chicken into pieces is a bit labor-intensive. Would be better to buy pieces already hacked. Also, I think a healthier version of the sauce (without all of the chicken fat drippings) would be better. In the end, the flavor was okay (but not amazing) and I had to excavate chicken from the bone during the meal. I suggest using chicken tenders/breast or some other easy-to-eat version of the meat. I love Ina's recipes. This just isn't one of them. item not reviewed by moderator and published
Terrific recipe; we've made it many times. Thanks Ina! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Cognac is brandy but it comes from the Cognac region of France. Feel free to use regular brandy, usually less expensive, or leave it out if you won't use the rest in other recipes. Ina recommends Pinot Grigio on the show. Look in the wine section of your local store for small boxes of wine about $4 each or Sutter Home makes 4 packs of mini bottles for about $6. I made this last night with no cognac and everyone raved! Enjoy! item not reviewed by moderator and published
Yes, let us by all means make this recipe without any of the flavor of dark meat, the body given by collagen from the drumsticks and bone, and silky texture of fat. Perhaps remove the salt and garlic too, and you can have poached chicken breasts without salt. item not reviewed by moderator and published

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