James Beard’s Chicken w/ 40 Cloves of Garlic

Culinary giant James Beard and food blogger Dani Meyer never met. Dani was born after the “Dean of American cookery” died in 1985. But the two were brought together through Beard’s recipe for chicken with 40 cloves of garlic, featured here. (Click here to see the recipe.)

Photo courtesy of Dani Meyer theadventurebite.com

Dani was among the great food bloggers we teamed up with recently to prepare dishes featured in the new cookbook, The Essential James Beard Cookbook (St. Martin’s Press, 2012). Dani prepared Beard’s chicken with 40 cloves of garlic.

Forty cloves may seem excessive – but not for this classic Provençal dish. “You will find that the garlic has been tamed in the cooking and acquired a delicious buttery quality,” Beard wrote. He suggested serving the dish with hot toast or slices of pumpernickel for spreading the garlicky sauce.

Dani – whose great food blog is The Adventure Bite – was pregnant when she made this dish, and so wasn’t in the mood for eating. But her husband gave the meal two thumbs up.

Peeling the garlic is the most time consuming part of the recipe. We found a garlic peeler can speed the job considerably.

Otherwise, the chicken, garlic, herbs, nutmeg, celery, olive oil and vermouth cook gently in a 375 degree Fahrenheit oven for about 1-1/2 hours. Our Everyday Fresh oil would be a good choice for preparing this dish. (Click here to see the recipe.)

Once the chicken is done, sit down and tuck into some culinary history by connecting with James Beard – as Dani did. (Get more James Beard recipes in our December eNews by clicking here.)

Bon appétit,

Your friends at California Olive Ranch