Milk Braised Chicken with Dates, Garlic, Lemon and Oregano
1 whole chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
¼ cup unsalted butter
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 lemons, sliced very thin
10 shallots, sliced very thin
5 cloves garlic, skin on
15 dried dates, no pits
2 ½ cups whole milk
1 handful of fresh oregano leaves
Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
Season the chicken with the salt and pepper. Place a pot that will fit the chicken over medium-high heat on the stove, and add to it the butter and olive oil. When the butter has melted and is starting to foam, add the chicken to the pot and fry it, turning every few minutes, until it has browned all over. Turn the heat down to low, remove the chicken from the pot and place it onto a plate. Add the lemons and shallots and fry in the fat over medium heat until soft and starting to turn brown.
Add dates and garlic to the pot, and allow them to sizzle in the oil for 1-2 minutes. Return the chicken to the pot along with the milk. Slide the pot into the oven, and bake for approximately 1½ hours, basting the chicken occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through and tender and the sauce has reduced into a thick, curdled sauce.
To serve, divide chicken on to plates and top with sauce, lemons, shallots and dates. Garnish with a generous sprinkle of oregano leaves.