Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Roast Chicken with Lemon, Garlic, Rosemary & Thyme

One of the ultimate comfort foods, there's probably nothing quite as wonderful as a plump and inviting whole chicken roasting in the oven on a Sunday afternoon. Savoury dark thighs, juicy white breast meat, crispy golden-brown skin, and the promise of homemade chicken stock made with the leftovers the following day. Every culture has an iconic chicken recipe, from Italian Pollo alla Cacciatora, French Coq au Vin, Hungarian Paprikás Csirke, Indian Murgh Makhani, American Southern Fried Chicken to the classic Roast Chicken rubbed with butter or olive oil and stuffed with fresh herbs, lemon and garlic, it seems that the mild flavour of this humble bird is adaptable to a multitude of cuisines and flavourful aromatics. It's also universal that on chilly days, we all reach for our favourite recipes — the culinary equivalent of a crackling fire that provides warmth, comfort and sense of well-being — for me it’s my husband's roasted chicken.

The chicken is wiped with a paper towel to remove any moisture then trussed with string to secure the less and wings; it's then rubbed all over with olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper

Roasted in a preheated 450°F oven for 20 minutes then at 350°F for 20 minutes per pound

Guy's Roast Chicken with Lemon, Rosemary, Thyme & Parsley
Serves 4

1 3-4 lb organic chicken
2 tbsp olive oil
1 lemon, cut into eighths
3 sprigs rosemary
3 sprigs parsley
3 sprigs thyme
1 clove of garlic, smashed
Salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 450°F. Place the chicken in a roasting pan and rub with olive oil and season well with salt and pepper. Place half of the lemon inside the chicken’s cavity along with the garlic and fresh herbs. Using kitchen twine, truss the chicken by binding the legs and tucking in the wings. Roast the chicken for 20 minutes, then turn down to 350°F for 20 minutes per pound, basting the bird 2 or 3 times. The chicken is cooked when the thigh juices run clear and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, away from the bone, registers 160°F- 190°F, depending on preferred doneness. Transfer the chicken to a warmed platter in a warm place and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes, so to allow the juices to relax.

To carve the chicken, remove any string from the chicken and take off the wings. Pull the leg and thigh away from each side of the chicken, and using a sharp knife cut through the connective joint, removing the entire leg and thigh. then cut each leg between the thigh and the drumstick to make four portions of dark meat. Then angle the knife along the breastbone and carve off both breasts, and cut on a diagonal into thick slices. To serve, arrange the pieces of roast chicken on a warm platter and garnish with sliced lemon and fresh herbs.