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Roasted Chicken with Leek & Point Reyes Blue Cheese Polenta


For the Roasted Chicken

1 5lb-6lb pound roasting chicken, cut up

2 fresh lemons - one sliced thin, one juiced for about 1 1/2 tablespoons of juice

1/2 cup Pinot Grigio or similarly crisp white wine

1/4 cup Melgarejo Hojiblanca Extra Virgin Olive Oil

8 cloves of garlic sliced in half

1 2-3" sprig of fresh thyme 

1/2 cup pitted olives

2 teaspoons kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to taste

For the Leek & Point Reyes Blue Cheese Polenta

1 cup polenta

4 cups chicken stock or broth

2 tablespoons Manzanillo Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 large leeks, washed, white portion sliced thin in to rounds 

1/3 cup best quality blue cheese, crumbled

1 teaspoon salt and fresh ground pepper to taste




For the Roasted Chicken

Preheat the oven to 375.  Wash the chicken and pat dry.  Season both sides with salt and pepper. 

Arrange the chicken in single layer in a large roasting pan with the larger pieces on the outside and smaller pieces in.  

In a blender or food processor,  add the wine, lemon juice, salt, pepper, one garlic clove, and Melgarejo Hojiblanca Extra Virgin Olive Oil.  Blend until smooth. 

Pour the liquid over the chicken in the pan, making sure to drizzle over each piece of chicken  Arrange the sliced garlic, lemon slices and olives around the chicken pieces.  Sprinkle with thyme leaves and additional pepper if desired. 

Roast  for 30-35 minutes until chicken is golden brown or until a digital thermometer inserted in to the middle of the thickest piece of chicken registers 165 degrees.

Optionally, separate the fat from the pan juice, reserving the garlic and olives for plating. Reduce by half in a small pan over medium heat.  Plate the chicken over the polenta drizzled with the pan reduction, reserved garlic and olives.    


For the Leek & Point Reyes Blue Cheese Polenta

 While the chicken is roasting, heat 1 tablespoon of Manzanillo Extra Virgin Olive Oil over medium high heat, in a 3-4 quart sauté pan. 

Sauté leeks in Extra Virgin Olive Oil for 6-8 minutes, until tender.  Increase heat, add four cups of chicken broth to the sautéed leeks and bring to a boil.

Add 1 teaspoon of salt. Gradually whisk in the cornmeal. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the mixture thickens and the cornmeal is tender, stirring often, about 20 minutes.

Turn off the heat. Add the second tablespoon of Manzanillo Extra Virgin Olive Oil, and the blue cheese and stir until melted.  Adjust seasoning and serve with pan juices from the roasted chicken.


Serves 4-6

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