Chicken With Coca-Cola and Lemons
Like many cooks, I keep a file of recipes I want to try. When I looked through it recently, there were a preponderance of lemon recipes, including one for roasted chicken with lemons and Coca-Cola from Frédérick Grasser-Hermé. Again, the savory and sweet. A food writer who has worked with chefs like Alain Ducasse, Grasser-Hermé is also the wife of the Parisian pastry chef Pierre Hermé. It humored me that a French cook would deign to baste her chicken with Coke. But it makes perfect sense: like many drinks – wheat beer, iced tea, sangria, Vietnamese sugar-cane juice – Coca-Cola is always improved by a wedge of lemon.
- Serves: 4 persons
- Juice of 3 lemons, zest of 2 lemons
- One 4 1/2 pound chicken, butterflied
- 3teaspoons kosher salt
- 1teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Olive oil, for sautéeing
- 1medium onion, thickly sliced
- ¼cup finely julienned ginger
- 3cloves garlic, crushed and chopped
- 1cup Coca-Cola
- ½teaspoon white vinegar
- 1tablespoon balsamic vinegar
Step 1In a large, rimmed dish, sprinkle the lemon juice over both sides of the chicken. Rub with the salt and pepper, then the lemon zest. Cover and chill for 4 hours.
Step 2Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Spread the chicken, skin side up, in a roasting pan. Reserve the lemon juice, diluting it with 1 tablespoon water. Cover the chicken with foil and roast for 30 minutes, basting it with the lemon juice every 5 to 10 minutes.
Step 3Meanwhile, cover the bottom of a medium sauté pan with a thin film of olive oil. Place over medium heat and add the onion and ginger. Cook until the onions are soft and golden, about 8 minutes, then stir in the garlic. Season with salt and pepper.
Step 4After the chicken has cooked for 30 minutes, lower the heat to 300 degrees and remove the foil. Begin basting every 10 minutes with the Coca-Cola, until the chicken juices run clear, about 1 hour more. Reheat the onions, adding the vinegars and 2 tablespoons of the chicken juices. Cook for 1 minute. Serve the chicken topped with the onions and pan drippings.