A taste of the med: One-pot chicken with market-day veg 

A taste of the med: One-pot chicken with market-day veg

To take this one-pot chicken to Mediterranean heights, use big fat garlic cloves, chunky free-range lardons and a really good chicken. If you can bear it, pit the olives yourself, too!

SERVES 4

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra to coat the chicken

100g free-range bacon lardons

2 fennel bulbs, fronds set aside to garnish, base trimmed and sliced vertically into slim wedges

150g baby carrots

8 garlic cloves, peeled

1 tsp finely sliced medium-hot red chilli

1.6kg free-range chicken, untrussed

150ml white wine

150ml chicken stock

100g green and black

olives, pitted

Heat a large cast-iron casserole over a medium heat for several minutes. Add the oil to the pan and fry the lardons for about 5 minutes until starting to colour. Add the fennel, carrots and garlic and fry for another 6-8 minutes until lightly coloured, then stir in the chilli.Meanwhile heat a large nonstick frying pan over a medium-high heat. Using your hands, lightly coat the chicken with oil and season. Sear in the frying pan to colour it all over.Transfer the chicken to the casserole, nestle it between the veg, add the wine, stock and a little more seasoning. Bring to the boil, then turn heat to low, cover with a lid and cook for 1 hour.Uncover the pot and leave the chicken to rest for 10 minutes. Transfer it to a plate to carve, tipping the juices back into the pan (you can also add any juices given out on carving). Skim off any oil on the surface of the juices and stir in the olives. Serve the chicken and veg in warm shallow bowls with the juices spooned over.