Roast Chicken Stuffed with Gruyère, Bread, and Sausage

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Gruyère is a good cheese to use for stuffing and for gratins because it both melts evenly and retains its essential character, adding that essence to the dish at hand. Here, it contributes extra flavor and texture to a traditional bread-and-sausage stuffing for roast chicken.

Ingredients

For the Stuffing

  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 2 Tbsp minced shallots
  • 2 tsp minced fresh thyme
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
  • ¼ lb (125 g) bulk pork or chicken sausage
  • 3 oz (90 g) Gruyère cheese, cut into ¼-inch (6-mm) cubes
  • 3–4 baguette slices, each 1 inch (2.5 cm) thick, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) cubes
  • 2 tsp chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • About cups (12 fl oz/375 ml) low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 chicken, about 4 lb (2 kg)
  • 1 Tbsp unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp freshly ground pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 350°F (180°C). Choose a roasting pan just large enough to accommodate the chicken, and place a rack in the pan.

To make the stuffing, in a frying pan over medium heat, melt the butter. When the butter foams, add the shallots, thyme, salt, and pepper and cook, stirring, until the shallots are translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the sausage and cook, stirring occasionally, until just softened, about 5 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and add the cheese, bread cubes, and parsley. Moisten with the chicken broth, adding just enough to bind the mixture together in a slightly sticky mass.

Pat the chicken dry and rub inside and out with the butter. Season with the salt and pepper. Pack the cavity snugly with the stuffing and truss the legs with kitchen string. Place the stuffed bird on the rack and roast until the skin is golden brown and the juices of the inner thigh run clear when pierced with a knife, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thigh without touching bone registers 160°F (71°C), about 1½ hours. Transfer to a cutting board, cover loosely with aluminum foil, and let rest for 10–15 minutes before carving.

To serve, scoop the stuffing from the cavity onto a platter. Carve the chicken into serving pieces and arrange them around the stuffing. Drizzle with juices from the roasting pan and serve at once.

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