Cornbread-Stuffed Chicken


4 cups lightly packed, cornbread (crumbled)
1 teaspoon plus 1/4 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1 1/2 teaspoon chervil
1 1/2 teaspoon sage
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup lightly salted butter (melted)
4 eggs yolks, lightly beaten
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan cheese
1 1/2 cups ricotta cheese
6 to 7 pound roaster
4 large russet potatoes, peeled and cubed
2 tablespoons plus 1 tablespoons olive oil


To make stuffing, combine cornbread with 1 teaspoon, salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, 1/2 teaspoon basil, 1/2 teaspoon chervil, 1 teaspoon sage, and 1/2 teaspoon oregano.
Toast in 225-degree F oven 1 1/2 hours,stirring occasionally. (do not brown crumbs, but dry completely)
Toss cornbread mixture with onion, 1/2 cup chopped parsley, the butter, egg yolks, and cheeses.
Chill stuffing thoroughly.

Raise oven temperature to 400 degrees.
Combine potatoes with remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, 1 teaspoon basil, 1 teaspoon chervil, 1/2 teaspoon sage and 1/2 teaspoon oregano.
Toss with 1 teaspoon chervil, 1/2 teaspoon sage and 1/2teaspoon oregano.
Toss with 2 tablespoons oil.
Place in oiled, deep baking dish or roasting pan with cover.
Stuff chicken.
Brush with remaining 1 tablespoon oil.
Set on potatoes.
Cover tightly and bake 1 hour, or until potatoes are tender.
Remove potatoes and reduce heat to 350 degrees F.
Continue baking chicken, uncovered, 1 hour longer, or until juices run clear when thigh joint is pierced with fork.
Baste occasionally with pan juices.
Remove chicken to ovenproof platter; let stand in turned-off oven about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, reheat potatoes; arrange around chicken.
Skim fat from pan drippings, add hot water if needed, and drizzle juices over chicken.
Garnish with parsley sprigs.

Note: There is enough stuffing here for 6 to 8 cornish hens; double the recipe for a small turkey.
The recipe can be made in a clay pot.
Use a well-soaked pot; start in a cold oven set at 425 degrees.