Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Roast Chicken



There’s just something about the smell of roast chicken cooking on a cold afternoon.  I did this with thyme and Meyer lemon.  Have you heard of Meyer lemons?  It’s a cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange.  They’re native to China but they are also available in North America .  The flesh is more orange in colour and they’re sweeter -- my mouth is watering as I type this!  They're difficult to find so grab one or two if you see them.

For the chicken:

1 Chicken *
A good handful of fresh thyme
1 Meyer lemon or regular lemon, juiced
1 Tbs of unsalted butter (room temperature)
Salt and Pepper

Preheat the oven to 400 F.

Rinse the chicken, pat dry and season the cavity with salt and pepper.  Rub the chicken with butter, and pour lemon juice over chicken, season with salt and pepper and the about 1/2 a teaspoon of the chopped thyme.  Stuff the cavity of the chicken with the rest of thyme and rind from the squeezed lemon.  Place the chicken in a roasting pan just large enough to hold the chicken and a splash of chicken stock.  If there’s room in the pan I like to add whatever vegetables I have in the fridge.  I chopped up some parsnip and onion.  Roast the chicken until it’s golden brown and the chicken leg breaks apart easily when shaken – about 45 minutes depending on the size of the chicken.

Remove the chicken from the oven once cooked and tent in foil for a few minutes while you prepare the gravy. 

For the gravy:

Please note: I’m not the best at gravy.  It’s often too oily, but when it works Phil and I get pretty excited.

Remove pan from oven and place on stove top and skim as much fat off the top as possible.  If you need more liquid add white wine, chicken stock or a little water and scrape up those brown bits.  Cook on medium heat on the stove top for about 2 minutes whisking in about a tablespoon of flour.  Return pan to oven and start carving the chicken.  Once the gravy has thickened serve!   You shouldn’t have to add more seasoning to the gravy becuase you have all the lemon and chicken juices that have lots of flavour.

With the chicken we had steamed green beans and truffle mashed potatoes.   For the potatoes I added the truffle oil, a little butter and salt and pepper…. that’s it!  

*I used a free-range chicken I found at Boffo’s

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