HelperChoice Academy Cooking Tips: Roasted Chicken and White Wine Gravy

Every week, the HelperChoice Academy provides tailor-made trainings for domestic helpers in Hong Kong. Through these classes, they learn new skills and techniques.

On Sunday, 7 October, 2018, we had the pleasure to co-organise with Superhelper a foolproof “roasted chicken with white wine gravy” cooking class for domestic helpers.

HelperChoice and Superhelper cooking class.
HelperChoice Academy and Superhelper roasted chicken cooking class.

Foolproof Roasted Chicken with White Wine Gravy recipe

What you need:


  • 1 kg Chicken, reserve the neck and giblets for stock if any
  • Salt and Fresh Ground Pepper 3‐4 Fresh Thyme or Rosemary
  • Sprigs Half Lemon

White wine gravy

  • 1⁄4 cup White Wine
  • 1 cup Chicken Stock
  • 1 tbsp Honey (optional)
  • 4 Sprigs of Thyme
  • 1 tbsp Flour mixed dissolved in water
  • Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
How to,

prepare the chicken,

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C or 350F.
  2. Wash the bird inside and out and pat dry. Trim off any excess skin from the neck and hind areas.
  3. Season the bird with salt and pepper inside and out, rub it with either butter or oil. Stuff the bird cavity with the thyme or rosemary sprigs.
  4. To ensure a tender chicken, stuff the cavity with the half lemon.
  5. At this point, you may choose to truss the bird or leave it naturally loose.
  6. Place the chicken on a roasting rack set in a drip tray breast side down. Roast for 20‐25 minutes.
  7. Turn the chicken unto its other side. The breast should now be facing up. To do this, remove the chicken from the oven and carefully turn over using paper towels to hold the chicken so that the skin is not broken. Season with salt and pepper.
  8. To check for doneness, the internal temperature of the chicken should be 170C if read from the thigh area. If you are not using a thermometer, check that the liquids inside the chicken are running clear by tipping the chicken slightly and letting the juices run off.
  9. Remove the chicken from the oven, season with salt and pepper and allow it to rest for 10 minutes before carving. Resting ensures the juices flow back to the skin. Discard the rosemary and lemon from the cavity.

make the gravy,

  1. While the chicken is resting, make the sauce.
  2. First skim the fat from the pan drippings (this is the clear liquid floating on top). If you are unable to see this, add 1⁄2 cup of ice cubes and wait for the fat to harden. Spoon this away.
  3. If you have any reserved neck and giblets add this to the drip pan. Turn up the heat to medium and bring to the boil. Deglaze the drip pan with the wine and chicken stock and dislodge and stuck bits. Let the wine boil off, about 1‐2 minutes.
  4. Add the honey (if using), thyme (or rosemary) and pepper and continue to boil.
  5. Option: Add 1 tbsp of flour dissolved in water to thicken the gravy. Mix well.
  6. Reduce the heat and simmer until the liquid is boiled down to 3/4 cup, about 10 minutes. Your sauce should be thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Strain. Reserve this sauce base.


  1. Slice close to the breast bone. Then slice at a perpendicular angle to remove the breast meat. Slice through the leg joint to dislodge the breast.
  2. Then cut the leg into pieces at the thigh and leg joint.
  3. Then cut the breast into two pieces against the grain. You should have a total of 8 pieces.

    Serve the chicken with its pan juice, and a mash or vegetables.

    HelperChoice Academy Cooking Tips: a Delicious Roasted Chicken and vegetables.
    HelperChoice Academy Cooking Tips: a Delicious Roasted Chicken and vegetables.


    At the point, you may want to place a thermometer in the chicken to monitor for doneness. The best position for the thermometer is in the thickest part of the chicken between the breast and the thigh. Put the chicken back on the rack and roast for another 20 minutes to fully brown and crisp the breast side.