balsamic-brined salt-crusted chicken

  • 2½ cups (625ml) balsamic vinegar
  • ½ cup (90g) brown sugar
  • 1 litre water
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 1 litre cold water
  • 1.6kg whole chicken
  • 2kg rock salt 
  • 3 egg whites
  1. Place the vinegar, sugar, water and bay leaves in a large saucepan over high heat and bring to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Remove from heat, add the cold water and mix to combine. Add the chicken, breast-side down, ensuring it is completely submerged. Refrigerate for 4 hours to brine. 
  2. Preheat oven to 180°C (350°F). Remove the chicken and pat dry, discarding the brine. 
  3. Place the salt and egg whites in a large bowl and mix to combine. Place half of the salt mixture in a small roasting dish. 
  4. Top with the chicken and cover with the remaining salt mixture. Cook for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the salt is hard and dry. Set aside to rest for 15 minutes before cracking the salt off and discarding to serve. Serves 4–6. 
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