Take your chicken Caesar salad to the next level with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver’s recipe by brining the chicken overnight for juiciness and roasting croutons in the chicken juices for the ultimate texture and out-of-this-world flavours.
- 1 x 2.5 kg whole free-range chicken
- 400 g sourdough bread
- Olive oil
- 1 bulb garlic
- 1 x 50 g tin of anchovies in oil, from sustainable sources
- 1 bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley (30 g)
- 2 fresh red chillies
- Extra virgin olive oil
- 1 lemon
- 4 romaine lettuces
- 150 g mixed-colour radishes
- 1 cucumber
- ½ bunch fresh chives (15 g)
- 4 tbsps black peppercorns
- 4 tbsps fennel seeds
- 2 litres fresh apple juice
- 100 g sea salt
- ½ bunch fresh thyme
- 12 fresh bay leaves
- 6 dried red chillies
- 50 g Parmesan cheese, plus extra to serve
- 1 tsp English mustard
- 2 tsps Worcestershire sauce
- 250 g Greek yoghurt
- 1 lemon
For the brine, toast the peppercorns and fennel seeds in a large pot over a high heat for 1 min, then add the apple juice, sea salt, thyme and bay.
Crumble in the dried chillies and bring to the boil, then remove from the heat, top up with 1 litre of cold water, then leave to cool completely.
Use a sharp knife to carefully cut down the back of the chicken so you can open it out flat, then add to the cooled brine (transfer to a bigger container, if needed).
Cover with clingfilm and leave in the fridge for at least 12 hours, then drain and pat dry with kitchen paper.
Preheat the oven to 200 C.
Tear the sourdough into big chunks, and put aside. Rub 1 tbsp of olive oil all over the chicken and place it directly on the bars of the oven, skin-side up, and place a large tray exactly underneath to catch any tasty juices.
Roast for 30 mins, then turn the oven down to 160 C. Add the sourdough to the juices in the tray, then break up the garlic bulb and scatter in the unpeeled cloves, then toss everything together to coat.
Roast for 1 hour, or until the chicken is golden and cooked through, tossing the sourdough croutons occasionally for even cooking. Leave the chicken to rest for 30 mins before carving.
Drain the anchovies (saving the oil) and slice in half lengthways, then arrange on a plate in a criss-cross fashion.
Finely chop the parsley stalks, reserving the leaves for later. Finely slice the chilli and scatter over the anchovies, along with the parsley stalks. Drizzle over ½ a tablespoon each of the reserved anchovy oil and extra virgin olive oil, then finely grate over half the lemon zest and squeeze over half the juice. Leave to marinate.
For the Caesar dressing, finely grate the Parmesan into a bowl, add the mustard, Worcestershire sauce and yoghurt, then whisk to combine.
Squeeze in the lemon juice, pour in 8 tbsps of extra virgin olive oil and mix again. Taste and season to perfection, loosening with a splash of water, if needed.
Trim the lettuces and radishes and scrape a fork down the sides of the cucumber. Finely slice the radishes, cucumber, parsley leaves and chives, roughly chop the lettuce and place everything in a large bowl.
Arrange the chicken and half the garlicky croutons on a board. Add the remaining croutons to the bowl of salad, pour over half the dressing and toss everything together.
Shave over a little Parmesan with a speed-peeler, then bring to the table with the marinated anchovies, chicken, extra croutons and dressing. Let everyone dig in and build their own Caesar salad.
Recipe: Jamie Oliver / Photo: Ella Miller. Courtesy of TLC Southeast Asia Jamie and Jimmy’s Food Fight Club S6