Country star shares party favorites from her new book "Around the Table."
Serves 8 to 10
2 whole (4- to 5-pound) farm-raised chickens, cut into serving pieces
Freshly ground black pepper
3 garlic cloves
7 to 8 fresh sage leaves
1⁄2 bottle dry white wine, plus 3⁄4 cup flour for dusting
1⁄2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1⁄4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes (preferably San Marzano), drained
1 cup whole pitted Kalamata or Taggiasca olives
2 cups fresh sliced baby Portobello mushrooms
2 cups chicken stock
1. Rinse the chicken and pat it dry, then season liberally with salt and pepper. Place the pieces in a large bowl. Smash and peel the garlic and add it to the bowl with the sage leaves and the half bottle of wine, turning the pieces to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator, turning the pieces occasionally, at least 4 hours but preferably overnight.
2. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Drain the chicken, discarding the marinade. Dust the chicken pieces lightly with the flour. Heat a Dutch oven or 16 x 13-inch roasting pan over medium-high heat for 1 minute, then add the oil. When the oil shimmers, add the red pepper flakes and stir about 1 minute.
3. Working in batches, brown 3 to 4 pieces of chicken at a time, skin side down, 5 minutes per side until the skin is golden brown, and set aside.
4. Add the remaining ¾ cup wine to the pan, stirring to loosen any browned bits, and boil for 5 minutes, or until reduced by half. Stir in the tomatoes, olives, mushrooms, and chicken stock to blend. Return the chicken to the pan and spoon the tomato mixture over the chicken. Cover the roasting pan tightly with aluminum foil, or if using a Dutch oven, cover with the lid.
5. Bake for 45 minutes, then uncover and cook for an additional 20 minutes, or until the juices run clear when the chicken is pierced between the leg and the thigh with the tip of a knife.
Dad's Mashed Potato Salad
Serves 10 to 12
6 medium russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 2-inch large chunks
3⁄4 cup (1 1⁄2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1⁄2 teaspoon kosher salt, or to taste
1⁄4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1⁄4 cup warm milk
1 cup plus
2 tablespoons Miracle Whip
1⁄4 cup yellow mustard
3⁄4 cup finely chopped celery
3⁄4 cup finely chopped onion
2 cups finely chopped sweet pickles
1⁄4 cup sweet pickle Juice
1⁄2 cup plus
1 tablespoon sugar
5 hard-boiled eggs, peeled and finely chopped (see Tip)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh flatleaf parsley
1. Cover the potato chunks with cold water in a large saucepot. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are fork tender. Drain and return the potatoes to the pot. Add the butter, salt, and pepper. Mash with a potato masher or electric hand mixer (essentially you are making mashed potatoes), adding warm milk as needed until the potatoes are smooth and creamy. You should have a little over 6 cups of mashed potatoes.
2. Add the Miracle Whip, mustard, celery, onion, pickles, pickle juice, and sugar, mixing after each addition. Stir in the eggs until combined. Chill at least 1 hour or make the night before and refrigerate. Sprinkle with the chopped fresh parsley before serving.
Tip: To hard-boil eggs perfectly so that they don’t have the dark ring around the yolk, which is a sign they are overcooked, place eggs in a pan, cover with cold water, bring to a boil, and boil 1 minute. Then take the pan off the heat and cover for 13 minutes. Take the eggs out of the water and put them in cold water. Store them in the refrigerator until you are ready to peel and chop them.
Mom's Peach Cobbler
Serves 10 to 12
Ingredients for the cobbler
5 to 6 medium ripe peaches, peeled and sliced
3⁄4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon baking powder
1⁄4 teaspoon salt
1⁄2 cup milk
1 cup sifted all-purpose flour
Ingredients for the topping
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup sugar
1⁄4 teaspoon cinnamon
2⁄3 cup boiling water
Vanilla ice cream
1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
2. To peel the peaches, cut an “x” in the bottom of each with a paring knife and drop the peaches in a pot of boiling water for 25 seconds. Transfer the peaches with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water. Peel off the skin with a paring knife, beginning from the scored end, and discard. Halve the peaches; pit and slice them lengthwise into G-inch slices. Arrange the peaches in the bottom of a 13 × 9-inch baking dish.
3. Combine the sugar, butter, baking powder, salt, milk, and flour in a medium bowl. Pour the batter over the peaches. To make the topping, combine the cornstarch, sugar, and cinnamon together and sprinkle over the top of the batter. It’s okay if the batter doesn’t cover all the fruit, it spreads during baking.
4. Pour the boiling water evenly over the topping. Bake for 45 minutes, or until browned and bubbly. Serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.