I've cooked this week's French Fridays with Dorie recipe many times before, and I certainly don't need an excuse to cook M. Jacques' Armagnac Chicken (pg 204 of Around My French Table) again. It's so easy and so delicious.
I've always roasted chicken with herbs, onions, carrots, and potatoes in the same pot. I never knew that simply pouring 1/2 cup of brandy in the pot, putting the lid on, and basically letting the whole shebang steam in the oven for an hour would produce such a moist bird with such delicious vegetables. I'm curious to see if any of the other Doristas managed to get a "beautifully browned chicken." It happened for me the very first time I made this, and hasn't since then. Since the bird is steaming, covered, it makes sense that the skin wouldn't crisp up. I just find it strange that Dorie goes out of her way to tell you to admire it's beauty. Oh well, nothing that a minute under the broiler can't solve.
This time, I tried Dorie's Bonne Idee of adding some prunes in with the vegetables. The sweetness played well with the back-bite of the white pepper. I'm going to continue to use them, going forward.
Conclusion: Love it. The meat stays so tender, and the gravy left in the bottom of the pan is sooo good. I could eat it with a spoon. Charlie was revolted by every piece of it. At least he tasted the chicken, a carrot, and a potato, but you'd think I was feeding him maggots from the expression on his face. I had to scramble and cook some tortellini. I need to send the tortellini company flowers or something. They're one of my few foolproof Charlie foods. Oh well--more chicken for me.