Chicken with 40 Cloves of Garlic

A modern take on an old favourite. Baking the garlic beforehand really improves the flavour of the dish.


  • 3 whole heads of garlic,
  • 1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
  • olive oil
  • ½ t (2,5 ml) Ina Paarman's Garlic & Herb Seasoning
  • 1 large fresh free range chicken
  • 2 t (10 ml) Ina Paarman's Chicken Spice
  • 3 sprigs of fresh thyme, marjoram or basil
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • ½ cup (125 ml) CinZano or sherry
  • 1½ cups (375 ml) water
  • 1 T (15 ml) Ina Paarman's Chicken Stock Powder
  • 2 T (30 ml) butter
  • squeeze of lemon juice
  • ¼ cup (60ml) parsley, chopped

Adjust the oven shelf to one slot below the middle position. Preheat the oven to 200°C. Break the heads of garlic apart, but don’t remove the skins on the individual cloves – discard the papery outer layers around the heads. Toss the garlic cloves with 2 T of olive oil, the onion wedges and Seasoning. Roast open in a small ovenproof dish for 30 minutes while preparing the chicken. Reduce oven temperature to 180°C.

Season the chicken inside and outside with Chicken Spice. Place the thyme and half of the lemon inside the chicken and tie the drumsticks together. Also tie the wings tight around the body. Rub the skin of the chicken with 2 T of olive oil.

Heat a biggish cast iron saucepan with ovenproof handles over medium high heat. Add the oiled chicken and brown it all round. Remove and keep on one side, pour off excess fat and add the CinZano – boil fast to reduce by half. Add the water and Chicken Stock Powder and scrape the bottom of saucepan to loosen all the browned bits. Reduce the heat to medium and add roasted garlic and onion mixture. Add the chicken, breast side up. Cover with a lid. Place the saucepan in the oven and roast closed for 1 hour. Remove the lid and roast open for the last 20 minutes until nicely browned.

Transfer chicken to a serving dish. Dish half of the garlic and onion around the chicken. The other half of the garlic and onion must be rubbed through a sieve with the flat side of a cup. Use this garlic and onion paste, together with the butter to flavour the sauce. Taste for seasoning and add a squeeze of fresh lemon juice and parsley. Pour sauce into a sauceboat for serving. Carve the chicken.

Serve the chicken with (lentil-rice-with-coriander) or French bread to mop up the divine sauce!


If you prefer, use chicken stock instead of CinZano.