Recipe courtesy of Laura Calder
2 hr 10 min
1 hr
12 servings


  • 3 pounds chicken
  • Loads of fresh herbs
  • 4 to 5 cloves garlic, crushed with the back of a knife
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • Olive oil, for drizzling
"Play Doh" Crust:
  • 4 cups flour
  • 6 egg whites
  • 17 1/2 ounces/500 g coarse salt
  • Water
  • 1 egg yolk


For the chicken: Slide plenty of herbs under the chicken skin. Put garlic in the cavity, along with any remaining herbs. Rub the chicken with pepper and olive oil. 

For the "Play Doh" crust: Mix the flour, egg whites and salt well, then add enough water to make a dough. 

Roll out 1/4 the dough to make a base for the chicken to sit on. Cook's Note: If it rips, it's probably because it needs a little more flour. Set the dough base on a baking sheet. Lay the chicken on it. Roll out the remaining dough, drape it over the chicken, and seal, hermetically. Cook's Note: No holes or rips allowed, so, if you must, make patches out of excess dough, stick them on, and seal. 

Add a splash of water to an egg yolk and paint the pastry case all over. 

Bake for 1 1/2 hours at 325 degrees F/160 degrees C. Let the bird sit out of the oven 10 minutes before serving. Cut off the crust and discard it. Carve the meat and serve. You'll be amazed at how the herb taste will have penetrated the meat!

Cook's Note

No holes or rips allowed, so, if you must, make patches out of excess dough, stick them on, and seal.


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