5 pork and fennel sausages, skins removed
100 grams firm ricotta cheese
16 pitted prunes, finely chopped
2 fresh chickens, butterflied (see Cook’s note; I used Bostock Brothers)
Olive oil for rubbing
Sea salt and ground pepper
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Put the sausage meat, ricotta and prunes in a bowl and mix until well combined.
Using your finger, gently break the membrane between the chicken skin and the meat. Push an upturned teaspoon into the gap and gently run it under the skin of the breast to lift it away from the meat. Do the same with each thigh and drumstick.
Place spoonfuls of the stuffing under the skin and then smooth the skin back over and gently push the stuffing into all the corners so the meat is evenly covered. R
ub the skin with a little oil and season generously with salt and pepper.
Place the chickens in a large, shallow baking tray and roast for 65-70 minutes, basting occasionally with the pan juices, or until fully cooked.
Rest for 10 minutes then transfer to a serving plate or board.
Cook’s note: To butterfly a chicken, use kitchen scissors to cut along each side of the backbone and remove it. Turn the chicken breast side up and press on the breastbone to flatten the chicken.
Wine match: Te Kairanga John Martin Chardonnay