Gordon Ramsay shares his secrets for jazzing up chicken legs
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Making the chicken look neat
Cleaning and cutting the ends off the drumsticks not only gives a professional look, it also gets rid of the sinewy tendons so the meat shrinks down during roasting and more of the bone is exposed. The bone acts as a handle, both when you stuff and wrap the legs, and when you eat them.
Gordon’s classic vinaigrette
Whisk together 125ml extra virgin olive oil, 2 tbsp groundnut or sunflower oil, 2 tbsp sherry vinegar and 1 tbsp lemon juice, adding a quarter to a half tsp fine sea salt and a little freshly ground black pepper. (If you like, you can shake all the ingredients in a screw-topped jar.)
Halve 8 plum tomatoes lengthways and cut out the green stalk ends in a neat V shape. Arrange the tomatoes cut-side up in a baking dish, drizzle with 4-6 tbsp extra virgin olive oil, scatter over 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced, and the leaves from 1 sprig of fresh thyme. Season, then roast in the oven (fan 130C/conventional 150C/gas 2) for 30-40 minutes.
Wrapping the parcels tightly
It's important to wrap the foil around the chicken in a tight, perfect cylinder. This keeps in all the flavours and stops the parcel from bursting open, so the chicken turns out a good shape for slicing. The 10-minute resting before unwrapping is important too, as it lets the juices settle back into the fibres of the meat and this makes it moister and easier to slice neatly.