Roast chicken recipes
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- 1 Chicken
- Butter at room temperature
- Lemon juice
- ½ Onion (Peel on)
- 1-2 Cloves of Garlic
- Fresh herbs
- Salt Pepper
- Take the chicken and make sure its at room temperature to cook. Take any string or elastic bands off it so its sitting freely
- Take the butter and mix it with the chopped herbs(fresh if you can get them dried are better than nothing), lemon juice and salt and pepper. Leave it to sit for an hour to let the flavours mix
- Massage the bird and pinch the skin away from the flesh
- At the rear end insert your fingers between the skin and the flesh and force a good gap through the membrane under the skin
- Now take spoonfuls of the butter mix or you could pipe it and put it under the skin. Smooth it down evenly over the breasts and down toward the leg and wing joints
- If you have any butter left smear it over the wings and drumsticks
- Pour the honey over the bird and rub it so it thinly coats the skin, season very well
- Take the half onion and sit it in the roasting tray near one end. Put the bird in the tray so the cavity end is resting on the onion and is angled up slightly
- Pour some warm water into the cavity, crack the garlic and throw that in, you could even chuck the squeezed lemon in
- Roast the bird either very quickly on a high temperature or very slowly on a low one. Its cooked when the juices run clear from the thickest part of the leg and breast
- Now the important bit. Take it out of the oven and let it rest for at least 30 miutes before carving.
Cooking the chicken breast-down at first, keeps the breast moist. If you wish, leave the lemon and tarragon out of the cavity and put in a stuffing. I've posted a couple of stuffing recipes that are quite simple and use leftover bread.
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- 1 1.5 to 2kg Free range chicken
- ½ lemon
- olive oil for brushing
- salt and pepper
- 2 sprigs chopped tarragon
- 1 - 2 whole heads of garlic. optional
- Preheat the oven to 200 c. Put the chicken in a roasting tin and rub all over with olive oil. Squeeze the juice from the lemon half and pour it over the chicken. Rub in salt and pepper. Put the squeezed out lemon half and the tarragon inside the chicken. Put some of the tarragon under the chicken too. If you wish, you can also put whole heads of garlic, sliced in half across, under or by the chicken. Put the chicken in the tin, breast down, cover with foil and roast for 20 mins for each 500 g in weight., so eg a 1.5 kg bird will need 1 hour in the oven. Then take the chicken out, remove the foil, turn the bird over, baste the breast, legs and wings with the juices in the pan, put back into the oven for another 20 mins to brown. Let the chicken rest for 15 mins before carving.
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- YOU WILL NEED
- 2.25 kilos free range whole chicken
- 2 medium size lemons, halved and squeezed keeping the lemon skins
- 1 generous handful of fresh thyme
- 2 to 3 generous pinches of sea salt we use sea salt flakes
- 2 generous pinches of cracked black pepper
- 6 cloves garlic
- 1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
- Carefully rinse the chicken with cold water and dry off with paper towels, rub the lemon juice all over the entire chicken then place the lemon halves inside the cavity of chicken.
- Take ¾ of the thyme sprigs and remove the thyme leaves from stems by holding the top of the sprig and stripping the leaves downward sprinkle the thyme leaves all over the bird.
- Now sprinkle the sea salt, freshly cracked pepper all over the chicken, to taste. Place the remaining thyme (including stems) inside the cavity of the chicken along with the garlic and onion.
- Roast in the centre of a pre-heated oven, 190°C / 375°F / gas mark 5, for 20 minutes per pound (450 grams) plus 10-20 minutes extra, this will be 1 hour and 50 minutes to 2 hours for a 5 pound (2.25 kilo) bird. Baste three times during the cooking time.
- For the final 15 minutes of cooking, increase the heat to 220°C / 425°F / gas mark 7, to give the skin that final golden crispiness. When it is cooked, remove it from the oven and cover it with foil and leave to rest for 30 minutes before serving.
- Serve and Enjoy! on a hot summer’s day with an easy Greek salad.