Meals

Roast Chicken

December 5, 2019
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A Roast Chicken recipe that never fails to please! The chicken is smeared inside and out with butter, garlic and oregano (or herbs of your choice), stuffed with lemon slices and roasted to tender, juicy perfection.

ast Chicken recipe that never fails to please! The chicken is smeared inside and out with butter, garlic and oregano (or herbs of your choice), stuffed with lemon wedges and roasted to tender, juicy perfection.

Roast Chicken is arguably one meal that’s hard to mess up. Even so, if you don’t add enough FLAVOUR or if you don’t have the cooking time down pat, you could be disappointed. Here’s what l do to add flavour and ensure that my Roast Chicken is juicy and tender every time.

How l Create Flavour

Butter, garlic and dried oregano is rubbed into every crevice, nook and cranny of the chicken. By doing so, this process …

  • adds loads of flavour
  • creates a nice crispy exterior
  • keeps the chicken moist and juicy while roasting
  • creates gorgeous pan juices for drizzling over the chicken (who needs gravy!)

I use dried oregano because it’s what l love (and believe me, it’s good!). There are of course, other herbs or combinations of herbs that would work just as well. You might prefer …

  • thyme
  • rosemary or
  • parsley

How Long do l to Roast a Chicken?

Due to my somewhat controlling personality, l use a combination of cooking time, internal temperature AND l pierce the thickest part of the chicken to check that the juices are running clear. Controlling? Nah!

20 minutes per 500 g / 1lb is the rule which l follow.

Internal temperature should be 75 C / 165 F.

Oven temperature is set at 180 C / 350 F.

The Vegetables

Roast Chicken with vegetables will give you an entire meal in ONE TRAY. For this dish l use carrots, washed baby white potatoes and 2 large onions, all drizzled with olive oil and lemon juice.

As the chicken roasts, the butter mixture merges with the olive oil and lemon juice to create gorgeous pan juices to drizzle over your chicken.

Roast Chicken

Your one tray meal is ready!

Danielle

Preparation Time: 25 mins
Cook Time: 1 hr 20 mins
Serves: 4 – 5

Ingredients

The Chicken

  • 1 x 2 kg / 4.5 lb chicken
  • 60 g / 2 oz unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1 tsp dried oregano or your favourite herb/s
  • 2 tsp grated garlic
  • 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1 lemon cut into slices

The Vegetables

  • 10 washed baby white potatoes cut in half, skin on (note 1)
  • 4 – 5 medium carrots cut into 3 cm / 1″ chunks
  • 2 large onions cut in half (note 2)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp white pepper

Instructions

  1. Remove chicken from refrigerator 30 minutes before required.
  2. Preheat the oven to 180 C / 350 F.
  3. Arrange the vegetables in a baking tray large enough to fit comfortably. Place the halved onions in the centre of the tray. My tray measures 34 cm x 28 cm / 13″ x 11″ from edge to edge.
  4. Place the olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Mix. Pour over the vegetables. Make sure they are well coated. Set aside.
  5. Mix the softened butter, oregano, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl.
  6. Pat dry the chicken with paper towels. Carefully separate the skin from the chicken breasts by using your fingers (see photo). This will create a pocket.
  7. Place 1 1/2 tbsp of butter mixture inside the pocket. Massage chicken from outside to ensure butter mixture is evenly distributed under the skin.
  8. Smear 2 tsp of the butter mixture inside the chicken’s cavity. Insert 3 – 4 slices of lemon.
  9. Massage the remainder of the butter mixture onto the exterior of chicken including drumsticks and wings.
  10. Tie the drumsticks together using cooking twine. Tuck the wing tips under to prevent burning.
  11. Position chicken on top of the onions. Scatter remaining lemon slices in tray. Place tray on middle shelf of oven. Bake for 1 hour 20 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 75 C / 165 F or until juices run clear (note 3). Baste twice, first after 30 minutes, then 1 hour, spooning pan juices over chicken.
  12. Allow to rest for 20 minutes before serving. The juices at the bottom of the pan can be spooned over the chicken and the vegetables.

Notes

  1. Washed baby white potatoes are perfect for baking. I place as many as l can, face down (cut side) in the tray to roast in the pan juices. The result is in the above photo; golden and caramelised on the edges.
  2. The halved onions act like a trivet (a stand) to keep the chicken above the pan juices. Slice the cheeks off each half first to give the chicken a stable platform to sit on. Don’t throw them out after cooking; they’re delicious.
  3. Place thermometer into the thigh (not the breast) to check the temperature. To check if the juices are clear, pierce the chicken at the point where the thigh and breast join.

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