Monday, March 26, 2007

Roast Chicken with Lemon & Rosemary Roast Potatoes

Now that we are having some lovely cool autumn nights I thought it was the perfect time for a Sunday night roast. Jamie Oliver lists this as one of his top 10 recipes in Jamie’s Dinners, and who wouldn’t, a roast definitely has to be on everyone’s favorites lists, doesn’t it? This one differs from the norm in that the chicken is stuffed with lemon, garlic & herbs & the potatoes are parboiled with the lemon & garlic before roasting to make them nice & crisp. It was a beautiful roast, juicy & tender & the potatoes were gorgeous & crispy on the outside even though they didn’t brown up that much & they were fluffy & soft on the inside, as you can see I also added pumpkin which I cant go without when doing a roast & it was delicious also. Mmmm, looking forward to more roasts in the coming cooler months.

Roast Chicken with Lemon & Rosemary Roast Potatoes

1 x 2kg free range organic chicken
sea salt& freshly ground black pepper
2kg potatoes, peeled
1 large, preferably unwaxed lemon
1 whole bulb of garlic, broken into cloves
a handful of thyme
olive oil
a handful of fresh rosemary sprigs, leaves picked
optional: 8 rashers of smoked streaky bacon

Rub the chicken inside & out with a generous amount of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Do this in the morning if possible, then cover the chicken & leave in the fridge until you’re ready to start cooking it.

Preheat oven to 190c. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cut the potatoes into golf sized pieces, put them in the water with the whole lemon & the garlic cloves, and cook for 12 minutes. Drain & allow to steam dry for 1 minute (this gives you crispier potatoes), then remove the lemon & garlic. Toss the potatoes in the pan while still hot so their outsides get chuffed up & fluffy – this will make them nice & crispy when roasted.

While the lemon is still hot, stab it about 10 times. Take the chicken out of the fridge, pat it with kitchen paper & rub it all over with olive oil. Push the garlic cloves, the whole lemon & the thyme into the cavity, then put the chicken into a roasting tray & cook in the oven for around 45 minutes. Remove the chicken to a plate. Toss the potatoes in the pan with the rosemary in the fat that has cooked out of the chicken, then make a gap in the centre & put the chicken back in. If using the bacon, lay the rashers over the chicken breast & cook for a further 45 minutes or until the chicken is cooked & the potatoes are nice & golden.
Remove the bacon & crumble over the potatoes. Remove the lemon & garlic from inside the chicken, squeeze the garlic flesh out of the skin, mush it up & smear over the chicken, discard the lemon & rosemary & serve

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