Chicken with 40 cloves of garlic


delicious even for a date night.  (it’s also French–ooh lala!)

Apologies first off, I’m not very good at taking sexy food photos just yet!  Feel free to share any tips if you have them, I’m dying to know how to get those picture perfect plates.

So 40 cloves of garlic sounds like a lot.  But if you’re a garlic lover, like those in my family, you’d wish there were even more!  These cloves come out soft, sweet, and buttery–perfect for smearing on a piece of crusty bread.  The garlic really mellows out after cooking in this dish, so much so that Nigella Lawson, the inspiration for this dish, says they’re “like savory bonbons in their sticky wrappers”.  That imagery makes it sound tantalizing, doesn’t it?    In fact, she calls the whole dish “a sure-fire, salivation-inducing supper”.  Now if that doesn’t make you run out to Costco for a tub of garlic, I don’t know what will.

Speaking of garlic, poor garlic.  It has such a bad rap, but in reality, who, pray tell, does not like the bite and fresh brightness of garlic?  (Mmm, perhaps vampires, but with sparkly skin and Twilight movies abounding, I really don’t mind if they stay far away from me.)  Sadly, it’s been hailed as a date killer, only sharing the throne with its cousin the onion, so I ask you (and by you, of course I mean your *cough* friend *cough*) –do you actually have any horrific  garlic stories to share?  Is its reputation earned, or have we been scapegoating the poor bulb?

Secondly, before I dive into the ins and outs of this recipe, we made this using a whole chicken that we just cut up into pieces.  I wouldn’t necessarily recommend this, as the breast meat turns out very firm and just verging on dry.  Instead, I would stick with just dark meat like she suggests.

Adapted from:

Active time: 15min

Total time: 45 min


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • chicken thighs (with skin on and bone in), or a whole chicken, chopped
  • 10 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 40 cloves garlic (approximately 3 to 4 heads), peeled
  • 2 tablespoons white wine
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • pepper


  1. Heat the oil in a dutch oven (heavy clay or cast iron pot) and brown the chicken pieces
  2. Alternate layers of garlic, chicken, and thyme, beginning with garlic.  Place the chicken piece skin side up in the pot and pour the white wine over top.  Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Cover and cook on the stove on low for 30 minutes or until done. (Nigella says pop it in the oven in an overproof dish for 1.5hours at 350*F)
  4. Feel free to remove the chicken pieces when done and reduce the juices in the bottom of the pan with a little more white wine.

Bon appetit!