- Prep time
- 20 minutes
- Cook time
- 35–40 minutes
- 2–4 servings
Brick chicken is amazing because of that crispy mahogany skin with a pan gravy that's made by deglazing with balsamic vinegar. Making the stock is optional, as plenty of good quality cooking stocks are available on the market, but there's something really satisfying about using the whole bird.
- 1 Fresh to Market Whole Chicken, halved with backbone, wing tips and giblets removed and reserved
- ¼ cup Fresh to Market Olive Oil
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 1 brick, washed and covered in foil
- 1 tablespoon flour
- ¼ cup balsamic vinegar
- ¼ cup dried black mission figs
- 2 cups chicken stock (packaged or homemade)
Homemade chicken stock:
- Bones and giblets from 1 Fresh to Market Whole Chicken
- 1 rib celery
- 1 carrot
- 1 shallot
- 1 bay leaf
To make the homemade stock, place the chicken bones and giblets in a small saucepan and cover with water. Add celery, carrot, shallot and bay leaf to saucepan over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 1½ hours on low, skimming the stock frequently.
Preheat oven to 400ºF.
To prepare the chicken, heat the olive oil in a large oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat. Season chicken with salt and pepper. When the oil starts to shimmer, place the chicken skin-side down in the skillet. Place the brick on top.
When the edges of the chicken start to brown, place the whole pan in the oven. After about 25 minutes, start checking the chicken's internal temperature. When the internal temperature reaches 165ºF (this could take up to 10 more minutes), remove pan from oven, carefully transfer chicken to a platter, and allow chicken to rest while making the pan gravy.
Pour out all but about 1 tablespoon of the pan oil, and place the pan over medium-low heat. Add the flour and whisk vigorously for 2–3 minutes, or until the flour and oil mixture takes on a nutty aroma. Add the diced figs and deglaze the pan with the balsamic vinegar, taking care to scrape up all the brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan; the mixture will look excessively thick.
Add 2 cups of chicken stock and continue whisking until the gravy becomes thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.
Serve a half bird per person or carve into portions to serve four. Serve with a liberal helping of the pan gravy.