Dobbes Family Estate | “Feta-Brined Chicken”
Pairing: 2017 Grand Assemblage Pinot Noir
Enjoy this go-to Dobbes Family recipe put together by one of our resident Tasting Room Associates that happens to be a culinary expert, Elyssa. A family favorite, this chicken pairs perfectly with the intricate flavors of our 2017 Grand Assemblage Pinot Noir. Creamy and savory, sure to please!
- 6 oz crumbled feta cheese
- 5 tsp kosher salt
- 4 lb whole chicken
- 3 tbsp dried oregano
- 2 tbsp fresh rosemary
- 1-2 pinches ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 2 lemons
- 3 cloves garlic
- zest of one lemon
- 1 bunch green onions
- 1 cup cherry tomatoes
Combine 3 ounces feta, 3 teaspoons salt and 5 cups water and blend until smooth. The best method is to use a blender or food processor.
Cover the chicken with the brine by placing the chicken in a large resealable bag, bowl/ container. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or overnight (the longer it soaks the more flavor it will take on). The chicken will need to be fully submerged in the brine the entire time.
After the chicken is done brining you will want to place the chicken on a plate/tray lined with paper towels. Pat the chicken dry and allow it to rest at room temperature for about an hour. Discard the rest of the brine.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees – this way it is hot and ready when you need it.
Make a dry rub by combining 2 teaspoons of salt, pepper, herbs, zest of 1 lemon in a small bowl.
Cover the entire chicken with the dry rub. This is where I tend to go over the top – give it all of that herb mix! Take the two lemons, cut them in half and place them inside the chicken for flavor. At this time, you can use twine to tie the legs of the chicken together. However, if you do not have twine do not panic – it will taste just as yummy but those lemons might fall out.
Now is the time to find an ovenproof skillet to cook the chicken – my favorite is a cast iron. Add enough oil to lightly cover the pan and place on medium heat. As the skillet starts to smoke place then the chicken breast-side down and let it sear for 30 seconds. Flip the chicken over so it is breast-side up and transfer the entire pan to oven. You want to baste the natural juice over the chicken at least once during cooking. The chicken will take about 50-60 minutes to cook fully.
When there is around 10 minutes left on the clock for your chicken, add the remaining feta (and more if you would like) to the pan and stir until incorporated. This will create a sauce with the natural juice from the chicken. Don’t put back into the oven yet.
Add the cherry tomatoes, chopped garlic and green onions to the skillet and return to the oven.
Green Onions: You can either keep these whole and just cut the ends off or you can slice them up.
After the 60 minutes is up you can remove the chicken and allow it to rest in the pan for 10 minutes. You are looking for an internal temperature of 165 degrees to ensure the chicken is cooked thoroughly.
Cut and serve with your favorite sides! Optional: top with left over herbs and feta.