Roast chicken (pollo asado con ajo) is a popular main dish in Spain, served in simple eateries and roast chicken shops throughout the country.
Not only is it delicious, it’s simple enough for the novice cook to make successfully every time. This particular version of roast chicken from Spain has more flavor by adding garlic and white wine. These ingredients combine for the perfect flavor, which can be enhanced even more by marinating the chicken overnight. It is a good family dinner dish, particularly in the cold weather. Serve with home-fried potatoes and a simple green salad, and a glass of Spanish wine if you wish.
Note: In Spain, there is a type of chicken called Pollo de Corral, which is corn fed and usually free range. All Spanish chicken dishes are much better with free-range chicken if you can find it -- the flavor is much richer.
- Heat the oven to 350°F. Cut the chicken into four pieces.
- Rub the chicken pieces with extra virgin olive oil and salt. Place the chicken into a large ovenproof casserole dish.
- Place the garlic cloves and 4 ounces of white wine into a food processor and whirl until the garlic is blended into the white wine. Add 4 ounces of the broth and whirl until thoroughly mixed. Pour this mixture over the chicken.
- Cover the chicken with aluminum foil and place the casserole with the chicken into a hot, preheated oven on the center rack. After 15 minutes in the oven, remove the aluminum foil from the casserole dish and baste the chicken with its juices. Continue to oven roast the chicken, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Periodically check to make sure that the liquid has not evaporated and add wine and broth as needed.
- The chicken should be tender when done. Remove from oven and serve with the wine sauce. Homemade french fries or another Spanish potato dish and/or rustic bread goes well with the chicken.
Variation: For more intense garlic and wine flavor, whirl wine, broth, salt and garlic cloves in food processor. Place chicken pieces in a glass dish and marinate the chicken overnight in this mixture (in the refrigerator).