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Something about the cool air and the snow made me want to roast a chicken yesterday. There is just something about warm, comfort food that makes you feel all cozy inside. That’s just what this roast chicken did. I’ve never actually roasted a chicken, so this was a new adventure, but a fun one! Once you get past the whole giblet removal and prep work, it’s actually very simple! And if any of you have roasted a turkey, then a chicken will be a piece of cake. This is a simple recipe that I’m sure most of you can handle!
If I were going to pair a warm dish like this with a beer, I would go with some kind of Christmas Ale. We paired it with Upslope’s Christmas Ale, which if you are not from the Boulder, CO area, you more than likely won’t be able to get. Any Christmas Ale will do though. Something with spice and warmth is the perfect addition to this dish and just adds to the comfort =).
I think the most difficult part about roasting the chicken for me was the actual carving of the chicken – something I’ve never actually done. On Thanksgiving day, I tend to take care of the side dishes and not the actual cooking and carving of the turkey. Maybe this year will be different! More than likely no though. I think I’ll delegate this task to my sister. I’m sure she will love it! Not…
Point is, I had to delegate the actual carving to Zach, who did a fabulous job and didn’t manage to “butcher” the bird too badly. Oh my and the result was unbelievable! I don’t usually love your traditional breast of chicken. It’s usually just too dry, and though it seems like chicken is one of the most simplest things on the planet to cook, it’s actually one of the hardest things to get just right. It’s either undercooked or it’s too dry. I have to say though, this was absolutely delicious. Probably the moistest piece of chicken I’ve ever had!
What’s a roasted chicken without a roasted chicken gravy! You have to have gravy! I’ve added this recipe as well, because it was a true experiment that worked out in my favor. If you’re going to roast a chicken you need the perfect gravy to go with it. Another addition to this dish, was the root veggies. I decided that I would roast this chicken on top of a thick bed of root veggies. With the addition of some onion and garlic, it was the perfect medley. Pair this dish wit your favorite mashed potato recipe or just serve with these veggies and a slice of bread. Either way, I’m sure you’ll be in love at first bite!
- 1 (5-6lb) roasting chicken
- 40 sprigs of thyme
- 2 heads of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 20 sprigs of oregano
- 1 lemon, cut in half
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted
- salt and pepper
- 5 medium sized carrots, peeled and chopped into large pieces
- 5 medium sized parsnips, peeled and chopped into large pieces
- 5 turnips, peeled and quartered
- 3 medium sized sweet onions, peeled and quartered
- 1 fennel, greens removed and chopped into large pieces
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- drippings from chicken
- 3/4 cup of white wine
- 3/4 cup of chicken stock
- 1/4 cup all purpose flour
- salt and pepper
- Preheat your oven to 425 degrees and situation the top rack to somewhere in the middle of your oven.
- In your roasting pan, combine the olive oil, fennel, onion, turnips, parsnips, carrots, 20 sprigs of thyme, salt and pepper. Mix until the veggies are pretty evenly coated.
- Take the bird and clean it out. Get rid of any giblets and the neck (sometimes the roasting chicken you would get at the supermarket, is already cleaned out – follow the manufacturer’s instructions for this process). Wash the chicken inside and out, then pat dry.
- Stuff the inside of the chicken with the rest of the thyme, all of the garlic, the lemon wedges, salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen twine, and set the bird on top of the veggies. Coat the bird with the melted butter using a brush. Make sure you use all of it and it’s pretty evenly coated. This is what makes the skin nice and crispy. Trust me it works. Season with a lot of salt and pepper. Cover the chicken with foil or lid and bake for 1 hour. Remove the lid and bake for another 30 – 45 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 180 degrees (use a meat thermometer).
- Remove the chicken from the oven and leave it covered to roast for about 30 or so minutes. Remove the chickens and all of the veggies with a slotted spoon and place on a serving platter. Lay the chicken on top of the veggies and recover until you are ready to carve and serve.
- Now you are going to start on the gravy. Set the roasting pan, with the leftover juices on the stove top and heat to medium-high. Whisk in the white wine and let reduce for about 3-4 minutes. Then add the chicken stock and flour and whisk until the clumps are gone and the gravy begins to thicken. Reduce the heat to a simmer and let cook for about 10 minutes or until it reaches a consistency that’s desirable to you. Remove from heat and pour the gravy through a strainer and into another bowl to get rid of all of the unnecessary chunks. Serve over the chicken and enjoy!