1 x 1.5kg/3lb whole chicken
salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 sprigs fresh thyme
2 chicken stock cubes
15g/½oz dried porcini mushrooms
2 garlic cloves, peeled, bruised
splash light soy sauce
50g/2oz unsalted butter
3 shallots, peeled, finely chopped
200g/7oz vialone nano risotto rice
75ml/2½fl oz dry white vermouth, plus extra to deglaze
1 small lemon, finely grated zest only
25g/1oz finely grated parmesan cheese
100g/3½oz chanterelle or girolle mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
Preheat the oven to 180C/360F/gas 4.
Season chicken inside and out with salt and freshly ground black pepper and place into a roasting tin. Place 3 of the thyme sprigs into the chicken cavity, then roast in the oven for 50-60 minutes, basting the skin occasionally with the pan juices. Leave the chicken skin to crisp up during the last 10 minutes without basting, then remove from the oven to rest.
Meanwhile, dissolve the stock cubes in a large pan with 1.4 litres/2 pints of boiling water. Add the dried porcini, garlic cloves, a sprig of thyme and a splash of soy sauce. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Keep the stock warm over a low heat.
Melt half the butter in a heavy-based pan until foaming, then gently fry the shallots over a low heat for 10 minutes, or until softened. Stir in the risotto rice, until coated in the butter and shallots. Pour in the vermouth and cook until the alcohol has evaporated.
Add a ladleful of the simmering stock to the rice and simmer, stirring continuously, until all of the liquid has been absorbed into the rice. Add another ladleful of stock and repeat the process, for 30 minutes (you may not need all of the stock), or until the rice is al dente but with a creamy texture.
Stir in the lemon zest and some fresh thyme leaves. Stir in the parmesan until melted through, then season, to taste, with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Transfer the roast chicken onto a warmed plate. Pour off the excess fat from the roasting tin, then set it over the hob over a high heat. Add a glass of vermouth to the tin, stirring and scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to deglaze. Strain into a clean pan and simmer until reduced by a third.
Melt the remaining butter in a frying pan until foaming and fry the mushrooms for 2-3 minutes, or until tender.
To serve, carve off the chicken breasts and slice each into 6-8 pieces (the legs can also be served, or reserved for another recipe. Save the chicken carcass for making stock). Spoon the risotto onto warmed serving plates and arrange the sliced chicken breasts on top. Spoon over the mushrooms and drizzle over the chicken jus. Garnish with the remaining thyme leaves.
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