Roast Chicken. What more really is there to say about this other than I give you Roast Chicken. Seriously though, I’m not just going to leave you hanging there with that one sentence, I do after all need to fill the page with text and photos, so I shall now go on to wax lyrical about Roast Chicken. (yes in Capitals, because you know, Roast Chicken).
So why Roast Chicken, you may be reading this thinking, well, I know how to make a Roast Chicken, but you know what, you are one of the lucky ones, I personally had never cooked a roast chicken until I was about 30 years old, and even then, I was constantly on the phone to my mum asking her all sorts of questions, such why is it not turning brown yet, or what temperature should the oven be on? Or do I need to turn it over half way through (seriously, you can ask her if you ever see her), she was in fairness very patient, even though she was busy and at work. So thanks Mum.
As I was saying, you would be surprised how many people can’t cook a roast chicken, but instead buy a prepared chicken from the supermarket or indeed one of the Rotisserie chickens which are already cooked (yes I have been guilty of that myself, see this post here). There are so many ways cooking a roast chicken can go wrong, you can undercook it and get ill, thats not what you want, under season it, or overcook it. Some people are just frightened of cooking a chicken because apparently it is difficult and can contaminate your whole kitchen (which in fairness back in the days, maybe). Some of you associate with cooking a turkey and all the trauma involved with that. Seriously though. It’s not that bad. Trust me.
With this dish, everything is cooked in one pot and the best thing, because the chicken cooks for the same amount of time as the vegetables, you can put everything in one oven proof dish or roasting tin and cook it at the same time. The chicken I used for this recipe was from the Farmers Market (which may sound all fancy, but its not really, just excellent quality). I have found as I have got older that actually life is too short to eat crap food and so when in the supermarket, don’t but the cheapest chicken go for middle of the range or indeed spend an extra £1 – £2 and buy the more expensive one, you won’t regret it I promise. It really does make all the difference, the chicken is more succulent and less watery, it has flavour and actually tastes like a chicken should, do a taste test and you will seriously notice the difference.
So, without further ado, read on for my recipe for roast chicken which is loosely based on the Roast Chicken recipe in Simply Nigella. I will be posting a whole range of different roasts over the next few weeks so that this can be your one stop shop for roasts.
When did you cook your first chicken and who helped you through it?
Roast Chicken, a perfect Sunday Dinner
This Roast Chicken is the perfect one pot Sunday dinner and would grace any table.
- Prep Time: 30 minutes
- Cook Time: 11/2 hours
- Total Time: -25803097.4667 minute
- Yield: 4 people
- 1 2.2kg free range chicken if it comes with insides, remove them
- 300 g new potatoes halved or use 3 large roasting potatoes peeled and chopped
- 3 leeks thickly sliced
- 1 red pepper deseeded and thinly sliced
- 1 yellow pepper deseeded and thickly sliced
- 1 lemon halved
- 4 tbsp Olive oil
- 6 cloves of garlic
- 1 Onion peeled and quartered
- 6 sprigs of rosemary
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 2 fresh bay leaves
- Preheat the oven 200 degrees without fan or 180 degrees C with fan.
- Take a large roasting tin and lightly oil the bottom with a tablespoon of the olive oil. Prepare all your veg, so halve the new potatoes and put them in the roasting dish, then the peppers, then onion, then the leeks. season everything liberally with salt and pepper, then squeeze each half of the lemon over all the vegetables, add a tablespoon of olive oil and mix well to coat the vegetables in the oil, lemon, salt and pepper. Place a couple of sprigs of rosemary over the top of the vegetables.
- Place the chicken on top of the vegetables in the middle of the roasting dish. Stuff the cavity of the chicken with the bay leaves, the rest of the rosemary, then add the two halves of the squeezed lemon. Season the chicken with salt and pepper, then pour the rest of the olive oil over the top of the chicken and massage it into the chicken skin to ensure it is evenly coated.
- Once you have massaged the oil into the chicken, wash your hands throughly under hot water with hand soap, this will help prevent any bacteria from the chicken and salmonella which can be very dangerous. Also be careful.
- Place the chicken and vegetables into the oven and roast for about 1 and half hours, or until the chicken is a nice burnished brown colour and the juices run clear. Remove the chicken onto a plate or carving board, and set aside for 10 minutes. Place the vegetables back into the oven for another 10 minutes to crisp up, whilst you let the chicken rest. Once it has rested, carve it up, serve with gravy. (I use bisto as i wasn’t in the mood to make it from scratch).
So there you have it. Roast chicken, nice simple dish to make on a Sunday or any day of the week. Always ensure that the juices run clear, before eating the chicken as that is when you will know it is cooked, to check, just put a small knife in the join between the thigh and the drumstick.
You will require a large roasting tin for this dish too.