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Roast Chicken Vinaigrette

A new take on the classic standby, this roast chicken is drizzled with a fresh Dijon mustard vinaigrette instead of gravy. The meat is superbly moist and flavored with fragrant fresh sage and lemon. In addition, unpeeled garlic cloves are tossed in while the chicken roasts and become soft, little, sweet morsels to go alongside. Add a green veg or tossed salad and dinner is done — snap!

Roast Chicken Vinaigrette

6 tbs. butter, softened
juice of ½ lemon
small bunch sage, leaves only, roughly chopped
4 lb. chicken
1 garlic head, broken into cloves, unpeeled
1 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbs. red wine vinegar
3 tbs. olive oil

Heat the oven to 350°F.

Mash the butter with the lemon juice, sage, and some salt and freshly ground black pepper. Gently separate the skin from the chicken using your hand – start from the bottom of the breast, moving round to the legs, being careful not to break the skin. Rub the butter underneath. Season the cavity and stuff with half the cloves of garlic and place in a roasting tin. Scatter the remaining garlic cloves around the chicken. Roast for 1 hour and 50 minutes, or until the juices run clear. Remove the chicken and garlic cloves from the pan and let rest 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, mix the mustard with the vinegar and olive oil. Skim off any excess fat from the cooking juices and place in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil then remove from the heat and whisk in the vinaigrette.  Carve the chicken and serve drizzled with the vinaigrette and garlic cloves.

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