“Like everything French, it’s pretty simple, slightly perverse, and very labor intense,” stated a fellow blogger on deboning a chicken for a Chicken Ballotine. Exactly. I will say this was an extremely gratifying experience; I feel like I checked something really BIG off the list of life accomplishments; I have garnered a new boasting fact for the next cocktail party with foodies or Master Chef audition. However, beyond the Bucket List and when all is said and done, I am not sure why one would really want to debone a chicken?
If you, too, want to feel a sense of accomplishment and would like to add a new skill to your boundless repertoire check this video out by Pepin:
Most of my energy and enthusiasm went in to getting the darn bones out so when I was left finally with just the “Chicken Jacket” I had to quickly think of something to stuff it with. All at once it came to me to make an Outside-In Chicken Marbella. Yes, I felt very clever, though hardly original. Chicken Marbella is the Gold Star dish that has earned The Silver Palate cookbook a place on so many of our shelves. I had some left over couscous that I tossed with prunes, spanish olives, capers, shallots, lemon zest and garlic and I had my ballotine aka BUNDLE!
After binding the bundle with twine, I rested it, seam side down, in a roaster on top of a few glugs of good olive oil and dry white wine.
About 1 hour and an internal temp reading of 156 later, my labor-of-love arose from a 350 oven with pride and french dignity.
I allowed the meat to rest about 10 minutes before carving and plating. Meanwhile, I added a little flour to the renderings and whisked up a sauce to pour on top of the medallion and side of spinach.
Oooh la la, je suis fatigue mais bon apetit a tous!