This yummy baked chicken has a finishing touch that gives it a broiled Swiss cheese crust, and is served with a rich, delicate sauce made from the pan juices, cream, mustard and more cheese. Mmmmmmmm!
Remove chicken neck and giblets; discard lumps of fat. Rinse chicken inside and out, then pat dry. Brush skin with butter. Place chicken, breast down, on a rack in a shallow roasting pan. Roast, uncovered, in a 375 F (190 C) oven for 30 minutes; then turn over and continue to roast until a meat thermometer inserted in thickest part of thigh (not touching bone) registers 185 F (85 C) or until meat near thighbone is no longer pink when slashed (30 to 45 more minutes).
Using poultry shears or a knife, cut chicken into quarters. (I chose to skin ours at this point.) Arrange pieces, skin side up and slightly apart, in a shallow ovenproof serving dish. Sprinkle with 3/4 cup (180 ml) of the cheese.
Return to oven and turn off heat.
Skim and discard fat from pan drippings. Stir in mustard and 3/4 cup (180 ml) cream; bring to a boil over high heat and boil, stirring, until shiny bubbles form (3 to 4 minutes). Remove from heat, add remaining 1/2 cup (120 ml) cheese, and stir until cheese is melted and sauce is smooth (if necessary, thin sauce with a little more cream). Keep sauce warm.
Broil chicken 4 to 5 inches (10 to 12.5 cm) below heat until cheese is bubbly (about 1 minute). Pour sauce around chicken; garnish with watercress.
Makes 4 servings.
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