• 12 rashers smoked streaky bacon
  • 16 pork cocktail sausages
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon sunflower oil
  • small bunch sage, plus extra to garnish
  • 150 g (5 oz) fresh breadcrumbs
  • grated rind of 1 lemon
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1.5 kg (3 lb) whole chicken
  • 25 g (1 oz) butter
  • salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 450 ml (¾ pint) chicken stock (see page 10)
  • salt and pepper

Halve 8 bacon rashers, then wrap a half around each sausage and set aside.

Fry the onion in the oil for 5 minutes until softened. Finely chop some of the sage to give about 2 tablespoons. Mix this with the onions, breadcrumbs, lemon rind, egg and a little seasoning. Shape two-thirds of the sage stuffing into 8 small balls, then spoon the remainder into the body cavity of the chicken. Put the chicken in a roasting tin, cover the breast with the remaining sage leaves, season and dot with butter, then arrange the remaining bacon on top.

Cover the chicken loosely with foil, then roast in a preheated oven, 190°C (375°F), Gas Mark 5, for 1 hour. Remove the foil, baste the chicken and add the stuffing balls and wrapped sausages to the bottom of the tin. Roast uncovered for 30–40 minutes until golden and cooked when tested (see page 11).

Transfer the chicken, stuffing balls and sausages to a serving plate and keep hot. Pour the fat out of the roasting tin to leave just the meat juices. Put the pan on the hob and stir in the flour. Cook for 1 minute, then gradually mix in the stock, bring to the boil, stirring until thickened. Season and strain into a jug. Serve with roast potatoes and vegetables, garnished with sage.

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