Monday, April 23, 2012
The perfect roast chicken- every time.
Last night I enjoyed such a lovely evening with my friends! As a family we've been taking Sunday nights to enjoy a slow dinner. Last week it was a lovely cheese tray with caprese salad on the front steps, yesterday it was roasted chicken, salad, and spinach pasta with friends out on the back deck. It was wonderful. I timed the chicken so that it would be done a half an hour after my guests arrival. That left us time to enjoy a drink and relax on the deck in the sun. I'm trying to live a bit of what I think to be a french lifestyle even though I've never been to France. There was no fancy table setting, no fussy food. Just good friends, good food, and yummy drinks. I just had a pile of plates and platters of food which we dished up and headed back outside. The chicken was moist and delicious. I'm becoming more and more passionate about a healthy lifestyle where flavors are infused into foods with fresh herbs, vegetables, fruit, and olive oil. My mom had even learned that she will eat less when she's satisfied from a meal that's full of flavor. And my kids really enjoy heading out to the garden with the kitchen scissors to get me the herbs which are needed for the meal. They're learning which is which and enjoy trying the different flavors that the herbs bring to our food. I LOVE teaching them this! We're all learning and enjoying this together!
I'm grateful to Martha Stewart for teaching me the perfect way to roast a chicken where it comes out moist every time. I read this way of roasting the chicken in the Jan 2011 issue and it hasn't failed me yet. I really believe you can just really play around with flavors and don't always need a recipe when it comes to cooking. For this roast chicken I took some fresh squeezed lemon juice- maybe 1/4 cup, a bit of lemon zest, about 4 cloves of fresh garlic, sea salt, pepper, some minced rosemary and thyme, and a generous splash of olive oil. Mix these things together and it makes a bit of a thick dressing. Then take that dressing and rub it all over the bird, including under the skin. Then stuff the cavity with a sprig of rosemary, 2 sprigs of thyme, 1/2 of a lemon, and a couple of cloves of garlic. Place your bird into a preheated oven set to 450 degrees for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes rotate the sheet, rub just a bit of butter over the top for a deep, beautiful color, and bake for 15 minutes more. At that point check the temperature by placing a thermometer into the thickest part of the thigh. It should read 165 degrees when it's cooked through. Cook for about 10 to 15 minutes more until you reach 165. Let stand for 10 minutes before cutting to keep it nice and juicy!