Matariki Chicken with Matariki 2009 Merlot Blend Cleanskin
1.5kg free-range chicken
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper, to taste
1 brown onion, finely chopped
100g pancetta, chopped
125ml full-bodied white wine
3 garlic bulbs, whole
2 rosemary sprigs
2 thyme sprigs
500ml chicken stock
2 bay leaves
10 small onions, peeled and left whole
2 field mushrooms, sliced
extra virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Heat a large, heavy-based frying pan over a low heat and add the extra virgin olive oil.
Season the chicken with salt and pepper and brown on all sides in the pan. Turn up the heat, add a dash more olive oil and together with the onions, fry until they start to colour.
Then add the pancetta and cook until golden. Add the white wine and continue to cook until the volume has reduced by half.
Whilst this is reducing, prepare the garlic. Peel away the outer layers of the garlic bulb skin, leaving the skins of the individual cloves intact. Cut off ¼ to a ½ inch of the top of the bulb, exposing the individual cloves of garlic. Place one garlic bulb inside the chicken with the rosemary and thyme.
When the wine has reduced to half, add the chicken stock, bay leaves and chicken to the dish. Cover and place in the oven.
After 1½ hours, fry the small onions, mushrooms and remaining 2 garlic bulbs until coloured and add these to the casserole.
Remove the lid and cook for another 30 minutes to colour the chicken and slightly reduce the sauce. Cut the chicken into pieces and serve on a bed of mashed potato covered with the lovely juice.
Or for a special occasion Taurus 2007 "A Celebration"