Italian Style Roast Chicken in Milk

Cooking time
Serves4 people
Italian Style Roast Chicken in Milk

Roasting chicken in a rich milk bath makes it meltingly succulent. We’ve added fresh thyme, nutmeg, a squeeze of lemon and a whole garlic bulb to the tin to make a fragrant, flavoursome, Italian-inspired sauce for this week’s whole roast bird.


  • 1.7kg avg. whole chicken
  • 45g butter, room temperature
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 500ml full cream milk
  • 2 onions
  • A bulb of garlic
  • 1 lemon
  • A handful of thyme
  • ½ nutmeg

Prep: 10 mins | Cook: 1 hr 30 mins

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1. Take the chicken out of the fridge, unwrap it and remove the giblets. Pop the chicken in a deep roasting tin or casserole dish and set it aside for 30 mins-1 hr to come to room temperature.
2. Preheat your oven to 220°C/Fan 200°C/Gas 7. Rub the chicken with the butter and season with a good pinch of salt and pepper. Slide the chicken into the oven for 15 mins.
3. Peel and thinly slice the onions. Slice the garlic bulb in half. Use a vegetable peeler to peel the zest off the lemon, leaving as much white pith behind as possible. Slice the peeled lemon in half.
4. When the chicken has roasted for 15 mins, remove it from the oven and turn the temperature down to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas 6. Scatter the sliced onions around the chicken. Tuck in the garlic bulb, lemon halves, lemon zest, and thyme sprigs. Pour the milk around (but not over) the chicken. Grate over half of the nutmeg.
5. Return the chicken to the oven and roast for 1 hr 15 mins, basting occasionally. If during the roasting time the chicken skin starts to look a little brown, pop some foil over the chicken and carefully crimp at the sides. This will help stop it burning while the chicken roasts. Takes about: 1 hr 30 mins Serves: 4 people Wash the fruit & veg before you begin.
6. Take the chicken out of the oven and check if it’s done by inserting a skewer into the thickest part of a thigh. If the juices run clear, it’s ready. If not, slide back into the oven for another 5-15 mins. Lift the chicken out onto a warm plate or board, loosely cover with foil and rest for 15 mins.
7. Strain the lemon, thyme and garlic out of the milk sauce. Pour the sauce into a small pan and pop it on a low heat to very gently warm through. Serve the roast chicken with the fragrant milk sauce.
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