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Buttermilk Clouds

40 Cloves and a Chicken

If you haven't figured it out yet, I love kitchen items. One item that I bought before we moved and didn't have an opportunity to use before today is a Tagine or Tajine. I really don't know the correct spelling or how to pronounce it, but I love it just the same. I do know it is of African/Moroccean origin. The premise behind it is slow cooking. And from what I gather, it can be in the oven or on top of the stove. If used on top of the stove, a heat diffuser should be used. I have been researching how to use this ceramic cooker, and I believe that it really is meant to be use stove top. Reason? The cone shape lid allows for condensation to form and keep the foods moist. If used in an oven, I think the lid would become too hot and the moisture would dry up. Just my idea. Anyway, it is meant for slow cooking. I put my dish on for 3 hours on the lowest setting on my glass top stove with wonderful results.

Enough history. On to the recipe. This is one I have heard about for ages and stumbled across a simple recipe from Alton Brown. (My hero.) Today I made it. Yes, it really did have 40 cloves of garlic. And, oh, did it smell good while it was cooking.


40 Cloves and a Chicken

1 whole chicken (broiler/fryer) cut into 8 pieces
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
10 sprigs fresh thyme
40 peeled cloves garlic
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Season chicken with salt and pepper. Toss with a 2 tablespoons olive oil and brown on both sides in a wide fry pan or skillet over high heat. Remove from heat, add oil, thyme, and garlic cloves. Cover and bake for 1 1/2 hours.

Remove chicken from the oven, let rest for 5 to 10 minutes, carve, and serve.

*MY CHANGES: I didn't have fresh thyme, so I sprinkled some dry over the chicken. I did have a rosemary plant, so I snipped a couple pieces off and added that to the pot. I didn't use quite as much olive oil as stated in the recipe. I just poured a little over, but didn't measure. One thing I would do differently next time is brown the chicken pieces a little longer. I was trying to get it going and skimped on that step, but it still turned out wonderful!

I made some Buttermilk Bread for one purpose. Read carefully. You don't want to miss this. Use a basting brush to get some of the pan juices on each slice. Nest get a clove of garlic and spread it on like butter. You can spread the pan juices on the bread, broil it so it gets nice and toasty, then spread the garlic. We just couldn't wait for the broiling process and dug in. Oh, mashed potatoes are wonderful with this. Stir a clove of garlic in each helping. You can not believe how mild and almost sweet the garlic becomes with a slow cooking process. Save all your left over garlic for garlic bread, or stir into a salad dressing. Folks, this stuff is some seriously good eating.

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By: Sharon Pickering | 8/05/2007 at 3:38 PM | If you want, you can leave a comment by clicking here.