Oh, man. Is there anything (anything?) finer in this world than a chicken, roasted to crisp, golden, salty perfection? Amazingly enough, even the children seem to agree, so I’m taking it to the next level by introducing an accompaniment that makes the most of the marriage made in heaven that is chicken + leek + pasta. Wait a minute, that’s bigamy. Ha ha.
For this dish, a plump, farm-fresh, free-range chicken is roasted atop a mound of snowy white, aromatic leeks. When it’s done the bird is removed to reveal the cooked leeks (some tantalizingly crisp, some melting and soft) resting in a pool of intensely flavoured chicken juices. A heap of cooked wide papardelle pasta – I’m afraid I’m talking non-PC, refined white pasta that will absorb all those lovely juices – is mixed in. The ribbons of leek get lost and melt into the pasta, making the kind of slippery, flavourful mouthful that will have you picking at the dish until lo-o-o-ng after you’re full.
That’s the theory, anyway. But will the kids go for it? Here’s the recipe.