• 1.6kg whole chicken
• 1 brown onion
• 1 bay leaf
• 1L water
• 2 chicken stock cubes
• 1 Tbsp Cajun seasoning
• Sea-salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper, to season
• 2 Tbsp vegetable oil
• 2 cloves garlic, crushed
• 2 x 400g cans chickpeas, drained, rinsed
• 80g chopped frozen spinach, thawed
• 2 tsp plain flour
• 1⁄2 cup white wine
• Coriander sprigs, to serve
• Lemon wedges, to serve
Preheat oven to 220°C. Using scissors, cut along each side of chicken backbone, remove and set aside. Finely dice onion, reserving trimmings and skin. Set aside. Put backbone in a medium saucepan over a medium heat and cook until browned. Add onion trimmings, skin and bay leaf and cook until softened. Add water and stock cubes and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes or until reduced by half.
Meanwhile, pat chicken dry. Sprinkle with Cajun seasoning and salt and pepper, then rub with 1⁄2 of the oil. Put chicken in a large roasting pan skin-side up and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 180°C, cover pan with foil and bake for 25 minutes or until chicken is cooked.
Meanwhile, strain chicken stock through a fine sieve over a bowl and set aside. Heat remaining oil in a medium saucepan over a medium heat. Add chopped onion and garlic and cook for 4 minutes or until softened. Add chickpeas and 1⁄2 of the chicken stock and simmer until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and lightly crush with a fork. Squeeze liquid from spinach and add to hot chickpea mixture. Gently stir to combine.
Remove chicken from pan. Put on a large plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Put roasting pan over a medium heat and stir flour into juices. Pour wine into pan, stirring until combined. Add remaining chicken stock, whisking until mixture just comes to the boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 2 minutes or until a gravy forms.
Cut chicken into quarters. Arrange on a bed of crushed chickpeas and spoon over gravy. Top with coriander sprigs and serve with lemon wedges.