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The Reason the Chicken Crossed the Road... 24 Clove Garlic Roasted Chicken

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There is not another roasted chicken in the world that can compare to the famed 24 Clove Garlic Roast Chicken. It is a classic rendering of roast chicken from South America. Due to the process of preparing this chicken, you will have not only an incredibly moist meat but a skin which is seasoned to perfection and has a wonderful crunch. When I begin to eat this chicken, I never want to stop!

You might think, with the use of 24 cloves of garlic, that this chicken is overpowering. It's not! What happens is at first you will be sauteeing the garlic and this will release its essential oils. Then the garlic will be pulverized (mashed) and with the breadcrumbs and butter, it will be placed under the skin of the chicken. This will protect the garlic from burning, thus the fresh taste of the garlic will become slightly sweet.

This is an incredibly easy dish to prepare at home. If you know how to roast a chicken, you can make this classic of South American cooking to absolute perfection!

Ingredients needed to make 24 Clove Garlic Roast Chicken (serves 4):

  • 1 whole chicken, rinsed inside and out
  • 1 lime, halved
  • ½ cup butter, melted
  • 24 cloves garlic, peeled and whole
  • 4 thin slices of ginger
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • ½ cup fresh breadcrumbs
  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • 6 jalapeno peppers, stemmed, seeded and halved

Steps:

  1. Place the chicken in a roasting pan and squeeze the juice of the lime over the skin. Set the chicken aside.
  2. In a small sauté pan or skillet melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic, ginger and salt and sauté 5 minutes. Remove the garlic from the pan and set aside.
  3. In a small bowl mash the garlic with a fork. Stir into the garlic the breadcrumbs and ¼ cup butter. Let the mixture sit 10 minutes.
  4. Stir the cilantro into the garlic mixture.
  5. Pre-heat oven to 375.
  6. Run your fingers between the skin of the chicken and the meat, being careful not to rip the skin (take your time doing this as it is not really as simple as it may sound). Place the garlic mixture between the skin and the meat.
  7. Spoon the remaining melted butter over the chicken.
  8. Place the ginger, jalapeno peppers and live halves into the cavity of the chicken. Tie the legs of the chicken together.
  9. Place in oven and roast 2 hours, basting with the pan juices often.
  10. Remove the chicken from the oven and place the chicken on a carving board. Let the chicken rest 10 minutes.
  11. Remove the contents from within the cavity of the chicken and discard.
  12. Cut the chicken into serving pieces and serve.

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