A perfect dinner for guests. This crispy roasted chicken cooked with sage butter, then smothered in a creamy, indulgent mushroom sauce, tastes like you’ve been slaving away in the kitchen for hours. When in fact, it doesn’t take a lot of time or effort at all.
I love to serve this chicken dish as part of a roast dinner. The creamy mushroom sauce goes particularly well when you dip roast potatoes into it. Serve some Yorkshire puddings on the side with some steamed vegetables and you have a show-stopping delicious meal that’s perfect for date night or dinner parties.
The mushroom sauce is full of flavour but surprisingly easy to make. The sauce is pretty versatile, you can choose your own mixture of mushrooms to add in but simple closed cup mushrooms will still taste brilliant.
The roasted chicken pieces with crispy skin are quicker to bake that a whole roasted chicken, saving you both time and energy in the kitchen too.
Preparing and Roasting The Chicken
To make the most flavourful, moist roast chicken with crispy skin, we smother each piece with a garlic sage butter and allowing it to marinate before roasting in the oven.
I prefer to use chicken quarters for this recipe, but if you’d prefer, you can use chicken thighs, drumsticks or skin-on chicken breast. You want a cut of chicken with the skin for that roasted crispy chicken skin result. Leaving the skin on the chicken allows the meat to retain the moisture too.
Any variety of bone-in chicken mentioned will still take at least 40 minutes to roast. Chicken breast will be slightly less at around 30 minutes. The reason that chicken pieces with the bone still intact take longer, is due to the bone impacting the heat distribution. However, it does improve the taste and moistness of the meat somewhat, so the extra roasting time is worth it.
Allow your butter to come to room temperature. You want the butter soft but not melted for ease when it comes to spreading it on.
To really incorporate the butter sage flavours into the chicken, score the chicken with a sharp knife. You can then spread the sage butter over them, being sure to allow some to get deep into the scored areas. For best results, I recommend covering the chicken and placing in the fridge to marinate overnight or at least 2 hours.
Roast the chicken uncovered for the crispiest skin.
Check to make sure your chicken is cooked all the way through. The best method is to use a meat thermometer. Pierce the chicken with the thermometer into the thickest part, it should read 75C (165F). Another, although not so accurate method is to cut the chicken quarter and look at the juices, they should run out clear.
Chicken should be removed from the fridge after marinating and allowed to come to room temperature before roasting in the oven.
You can freeze your uncooked chicken portions with the butter for make ahead meals.
How to Make The Mushroom Sauce
For this sauce recipe, I used a simple closed cup white mushroom but you can also use brown chestnut mushrooms or add in a mixture of wild varieties such as Porcini, Oyster, Shitake or Maitake for depth of flavour.
Using a double cream (heavy cream if you’re from the US) makes the sauce thicker and more creamy. If you want to use a lower fat cream, add in a teaspoon of cornflour/cornstarch to a small amount of the cream in a separate bowl, before mixing in the rest of the cream and adding to the recipe.
I don’t recommend adding salt to the sauce as you usually have plenty already added to the chicken stock and cheese. However if you feel the sauce needs more seasoning, wait until you have cooked your mushrooms through before adding it in. The reason for this, is that salt will draw out the liquid in the mushrooms too quickly, making them soggy before they’ve had a chance to brown and cook. Add the salt once the mushrooms are cooked through.
This mushroom sauce is great with steak, if you want an alternative meat. It’ll taste amazing served with this nut roast too, for a vegetarian option.
For a vegetarian mushroom sauce, just replace the chicken stock with a vegetable stock and use a vegetarian parmesan.
You can omit the parmesan if you’d prefer, the sauce still tastes amazing.
You can also omit the wine, just use extra stock. But in this instance, I recommend leaving the parmesan in the recipe for the flavour.
The Sauce can be made ahead and reheating it in a pan doesn’t ruin the flavour at all, just add the cream and cheese before serving to prevent it separating. Cook all the sauce ingredients and then wait to add the cream when you heat it up to use it.
For the chicken, I recommend freezing it uncooked, with the butter spread on.
For the sauce, you can freeze it once made and cooled, but the cream may separate upon reheating. For best results when freezing. Omit the cream and cheese until you reheat the sauce and add them in to warm through, before serving.
You can substitute the sage for rosemary or thyme.
Creamy Mushroom Sauce with Sage Roasted Chicken
For the Chicken
- 4 Skin-on Bone-in Chicken Quarters
- 30 g Butter
- 1 Cloves of Garlic crushed
- 4 Fresh Sage Leaves chopped
- 0.25 tsp Black Pepper
For the Sauce
- 200 g Closed Cup Mushrooms sliced
- 1 Leek finely chopped
- 2 Cloves of Garlic crushed
- 1 Onion finely chopped
- 4 Sage Leaves chopped
- 30 g Butter
- 100 ml Dry White Wine
- 200 ml Chicken Stock
- 30 g Parmesan grated
- 150 ml Double Cream
For the Sage Roasted Chicken
- Add the sage and garlic along with the pepper and a little salt to the softened butter and mix through.
- Score the chicken pieces using a sharp knife.
- Spread the butter all over the chicken, cover the chicken and leave to marinate in the fridge for at least 2 hours or overnight.
- Preheat the oven to 180C
- Allow the chicken to return to room temperature and then place in the oven for 45 minutes.
- Melt the butter for your sauce in a pan over a medium heat.
For the Creamy Mushroom Sauce
- Melt the butter over a medium heat and add the chopped onion and leek to the pan, fry until soft.
- Add the garlic to the pan and fry for another minute.
- Add the mushrooms and fry until soft.
- Add the sage and white wine and cook until the wine is reduced and almost gone.
- Add the chicken stock and cook until it begins to reduce and thicken.
- Add your cream and parmesan and warm through. Pour over the chicken and serve immediately.
Recipe Notes and Guidance
- You can use a variety of mushrooms for this recipe, chestnut mushrooms or a mixture of wild mushrooms will work well.
- For best results, I recommend leaving the chicken to marinate overnight.
- Dried Sage can also be used as a substitute to fresh, just use a bit less as it has a more intense flavour.
- You can omit the parmesan if you’d prefer.
- You can omit the wine and use extra stock instead, however I would recommend to leave the parmesan in the recipe this way, for the flavour.
- You can substitute the double cream for a lower fat variety, but add in a teaspoon of cornflour to thicken the sauce.
- The mushroom sauce will also pair well with steak, potatoes or a nut roast.