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Crisp-Skin Roasted Chicken with Truffle Butter

Distinctively earthy and intensely fragrant black truffles season this golden-brown roasted chicken. Truffle butter rubbed under the skin infuses the meat with flavor, and more butter whisked into a pan sauce made with the drippings gives the sauce a luscious, velvety feel and indulgent taste.

Ingredients:

  • 1 black or white truffle (about 1/2 oz.) 
  • 6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature  
  • 1 chicken, about 4 lb. 
  • Canola oil as needed 
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt, plus more, to taste  
  • 1/2 tsp. freshly ground pepper, plus more, to taste 
  • 1 small yellow onion, cut into 2-inch pieces 
  • 1 small carrot, cut into 2-inch pieces 
  • 1 small celery stalk, cut into 2-inch pieces 
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken broth or stock 

Directions:

Using a truffle shaver or sharp, thin-bladed knife, shave the truffle into very thin slices and coarsely chop. Transfer to a bowl, add the butter and mix with a rubber spatula until well combined. Cover and let stand at room temperature for 4 hours. You will need 6 Tbs. of the truffle butter for this recipe; reserve the rest for another use.

Pull off the fat from around the chicken’s cavity and coarsely chop the fat. In a small saucepan over low heat, cook the fat until rendered, about 15 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve; you should have about 1 1/2 Tbs. fat. Let the chicken and fat stand at room temperature for 1 hour.

Preheat an oven to 425°F. Place a V-shaped roasting rack in a flameproof roasting pan and lightly oil the rack.

Slip your fingers under the chicken skin and loosen the skin over the breast, thighs and drumsticks. Slip about 4 Tbs. of the truffle butter under the skin and massage the chicken to distribute the butter evenly. Rub the rendered fat on the outside of the chicken. Season the chicken inside and out with the 2 tsp. salt and the 1/2 tsp. pepper.

Place the chicken on its side on the roasting rack and roast for 20 minutes. Turn the chicken on its other side and roast for 20 minutes more. Turn the chicken on its back and add the onion, carrot and celery to the pan. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the breast, away from the bone, registers 160°F, 30 to 40 minutes more. Tilt the chicken so any juice in the cavity flows into the pan. Transfer the chicken to a carving board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

Using a slotted spoon, lift out and discard the vegetables in the pan. Pour the pan juices into a glass measuring cup, let stand for about 2 minutes, then skim off the fat. Return the pan juices to the roasting pan and place the pan on the stovetop over medium heat. Add the broth and bring to a boil, stirring to scrape up the browned bits. Remove the pan from the heat and whisk in the remaining truffle butter, 1 Tbs. at a time. Adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

Carve the chicken and arrange on warmed plates. Spoon the sauce on top and serve immediately. Serves 4.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma New Flavors for Chicken, by Rick Rodgers (Oxmoor House, 2008).