World-renowned chef David Bouley's ultimate dish

When it comes to cooking, renowned chef David Bouley has nothing but love.

And after more than 40 years in the business, he keeps that passion alive and his cooking style fresh while relishing in French traditions.

The name Bouley is synonymous with nouveau cuisine, as well as a flare for the dramatic. Bouley is the chef and owner of the New York's famous Bouley restaurant.

And, in "THE Dish" on "The Early Show on Saturday Morning," Bouley shared the recipe for his ultimate dish: Chicken baked "en cocotte" with Cornwall Land Trust Clover Hay, using a traditional French technique he learned from legendary French chef Roger Verge, who cooked on a bed of lavender.

Like the mouth-watering food he cooks, the renowned chef's skills and management style never go stale. He's constantly re-inventing both himself and his restaurants. His most recent acquisition is brushstroke, a Japanese restaurant and teaching school, also in New York.

Many don't realize that Bouley is actually a Connecticut native, though he honed his skills under star chefs in Paris and elsewhere.

Among his numerous awards are Michelin stars and the James Beard Best Chef Award in 2000.

On "THE Dish," a different famous chef each week reveals what he or she would have if they could have just one meal. That's because for us, "THE Dish" is about the moment, the place, and the person you would share it with. It's about the emotion behind the food, it's about the conversation and the meal itself. We want to get to know these chefs on a deeper level and hope our viewers do, as well.

Enjoy all our "Early Show" recipes!

RECIPE: Chicken baked "en cocotte" with Cornwall Land Trust Clover Hay

Bouley pot-roasts chicken on aromatic hay in the oven, but for home cooks, dried chamomile flowers -- loose or in tea bags -- can replace the hay Bouley uses.

Before baking, Bouley seals chicken inside a pot using homemade bread dough, a very old French technique. Store-bought pizza dough works well, too.

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 20 thyme sprigs
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chamomile flowers or the contents of 4 chamomile tea bags
  • One 3 1/2-pound chicken, patted dry
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh or thawed frozen pizza dough
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 large garlic cloves, smashed
  • 3/4 pound mixed wild mushrooms, such as shiitake and oyster, stemmed and thickly sliced
  • 1/2 cup veal demiglace mixed with 1/2 cup of water

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Spread the thyme, bay leaves and chamomile in the bottom of a large, deep, enameled cast-iron casserole. Season the chicken inside and out with salt and pepper and set it directly on the aromatics. Rub the top of the bird with 3 tablespoons of the butter.

Roll the pizza dough into a rope that is long enough to encircle the casserole. Press the dough onto the rim of the casserole and cover with the lid, pressing it into the dough. Pinch the dough up onto the lid slightly to seal the pot completely. Roast the chicken in the center of the oven for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Remove the lid, cracking the dough, and pierce the thigh to make sure the bird is cooked through. Replace the lid and let the chicken rest for 5 minutes.

Heat the olive oil in the skillet. Add the garlic and cook over moderate heat until golden, about 5 minutes; discard the garlic. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately low heat until softened and lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Add the demiglace mixture and simmer until slightly reduced, about 5 minutes.

Transfer the chicken to a cutting board and strain the pan juices into a measuring cup. Discard the fat from the juices, then add the juices to the mushrooms. Remove the chicken skin and slice the breast meat. Cut off the legs, cutting them into two pieces each. Arrange the chicken on the brussels sprouts on the platter, spoon the mushrooms and sauce on top and serve with chunks of the baked pizza dough, for dipping.

Serve with potatoes and vegetable of your choice.

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