Everyone has their favorite piece. But once you try, what recipes allow you to decorate the remains of the beast?
The star of Sunday lunches and other family meals, roast chicken has never lost its popularity. Crisp, golden and juicy, the flavors of this great classic of French gastronomy have been teasing our nostrils and taste buds since childhood. But whether it’s homemade or store-bought, all too often the leftovers spill out of the dish after guests have had their fill. White, crispy skin or barely spread wings: Benjamin Baches, founder and owner of the Pique-Poule restaurant/bird, knows how to sublimate them. He gives us tips and recipes to immortalize the pleasures of a good roast chicken.
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Ba-ba: which chicken to choose?
Before you begin, a reminder is in order. When it comes to chicken selection, Benjamin Baches is clear: “The term ‘farmer’ no longer means anything and is completely overused.” There is no control over it and it does not show that the animal was not raised on hormones, injected with antibiotics or slaughtered at only 30 or 40 days old”. To be sure of the quality of your product and to get a good chicken, you should bet on Label Rouge. “This label indicates that it was raised on grain, that it benefited from an open space and that it was slaughtered at a minimum of 80 days.” Guaranteed quality guarantee.
How to store leftovers?
A chicken takes up space. But putting it in the oven overnight is not a good idea. “To preserve all its tenderness, the ideal is to keep it in its juice, which contains collagen. This will protect him. Then we film it on contact, that is, by placing the film directly on the meat of the chicken”. Second tip: dip the chicken in fat, preferably duck fat.
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Chicken confit for his sandwiches
One of Pique-Poule’s flagship recipes is undoubtedly chicken confit cooked in duck fat. “We optimize all the pieces of the chicken so there is no waste. Because of this, all our trimmings go into the confit,” explains Benjamin Baches. A technique that makes it possible to obtain juicy chicken with a tender and uncooked texture that is served with homemade fries or tucked into sandwiches, wraps and burgers. Similar to duck confit, this technique involves slow-cooking meat in fat seasoned with aromatic herbs, spices and salt. For even more flavor, animal fat is ideal.
The chicken transforms! This is the favorite part of many roast bird lovers and Benjamin Baches is no exception. To enjoy it to the fullest, it is transformed into chicken gratins. “You just have to pick up the little pieces that are at the joints of the wings or on the hips, for example. Once they are collected, they are seasoned with salt, pepper and spices and simply put in the oven at 220°C in a tray covered with baking paper”. A delight that can be eaten as it is or sprinkled on salads and sandwiches.
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Healthy and delicious chicken broth
Traditionally, chicken stock is made with raw chicken carcass that you buy from your butcher. But to maximize its use and entertain in a thousand ways, it is quite possible to make it with leftover roast chicken. To do this, simply place its peeled carcass in a large pot and add an aromatic garnish consisting of onions, carrots, celery and leeks. For a well-flavored broth, add a bunch of garni or even a stick of lemongrass, cut in half. Then cover it with water and let it simmer for about 1 hour. Season with salt and pepper. Once the broth is well infused, remove the carcass and vegetables and filter the preparation before chilling it in the refrigerator. Then a layer of fat forms on the surface, which is removed with a spoon. The broth is ready and can be used to make risotto, soups, pasta and rice or to poach meat and fish. A much healthier and tastier alternative to commercial bouillon cubes!
Four tips for successful poultry cooking
Nothing beats homemade soup: Pique-poule offers a version inspired by the flavors of Asia.
- Chicken broth
- leftover roast chicken
- 4 mushroom mushrooms
- Pieces of chicken
- Fresh coriander
- Peel the rest of the carcass and roughly chop the remaining pieces.
- Make the chicken stock as shown above. The only difference? Remove only the carcass and leave the vegetables in the broth.
- Cut the mushrooms with four buttons.
- Once your stock is ready, add the chicken pieces, mushrooms and let it simmer for 10 minutes without heat.
- When ready to serve, add a few fresh coriander leaves.
Garnish your salads and sandwiches
Little effort for big results: To boost salads and sandwiches, simply crumble the carcass, then add chicken pieces to your Caesar salads, Thai salads or Quinoa salads. When it comes to sandwiches, anything is possible: club sandwich, chicken curry sandwich, Asian wraps, fajitas… Let your imagination run wild using breads, sauces, raw vegetables and vegetables of your choice.
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