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Cooking Time For Chicken In A Pot

Asked by Steph8586. Answered on 20th February 2020

Full question

I made the Chicken In A Pot and everything was way overdone. I followed the “set it and forget it” instructions with a 3.9lb chicken in an oval Le Creuset. Does this need more adjustment/close monitoring?

Image of Nigella's Chicken In A Pot With Lemon And Orzo
Photo by Nigella
Chicken In A Pot with Lemon and Orzo
By Nigella
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Our answer

Nigella's Chicken In A Pot With Lemon And Orzo is an all-in-one dish that cooks gently in the oven. The orzo is added towards the end of the cooking time, so that it cooks until soft but it should not be particularly mushy. For a 3½-4 pound chicken the cooking time in an oven at 180°C/160°C Fan/350°F should be 1½-2 hours and the chicken needs to be so tender that it can be easily shredded. So we have not found the timings for the chicken itself to be too long.

For the vegetables if you prefer a little more texture then you can cut the carrots and leeks into larger pieces, though they will still be fairly soft after the cooking time. For the orzo the cooking time can vary by brand and you may want to check the cooking time on the packaging. If the cooking time is 6 minutes or less then you may want to reduce the cooking time in the oven slightly, or check the orzo for "doneness" earlier. Finally, ovens do vary and Nigella mentions in the introduction that the timings are the ones she uses for her oven and casserole dish, but notes that "you will use the one you have, which makes a difference to how quickly everything cooks, how much evaporation there will be, and so on.".

Bara Brith

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