Roast chicken

September 2, 2012 § 4 Comments

So, lately I’ve been buying a whole chicken on a Sunday, roasting it, and then shredding it to bits to add to meals throughout the week.  Throw a handful on a spinach salad for lunch (along with some chevre, cherry toms, spring onions…), or make that awesome chicken and tarragon salad Mike made for B’s 30th, or thai peanut salad, or chicken tinga,.or this great asian noodle salad….  the possibilities are endless.

Also, it’s really cost effective!  I don’t know about you, but I used to buy chicken breasts and cook them, or just buy a whole roasted chicken.  Then I did the math – it’s WAY cheaper to buy a raw chicken and roast it myself (to wit: it costs £2 for two chicken breasts or £5-6 for a whole roasted chicken, compared to £2.75 for an entire raw chicken that I roast with like 50p worth of veggies and herbs.  MATH: it saves you money!).  Sure it requires an hour and a half, but preparation takes approximately 5 minutes, and once it’s in the oven you can forget about it (until you start salivating from the smell, of course).

In the last month or so I’ve tried various recipes for roasting chicken, and thought I may as well start chronicling them.  I did Jamie Oliver’s last time (it was aggressively fine), and today:  Ina Garten’s ‘Perfect Roast Chicken‘ recipe was used.  The result? Mmmmmmm.

Recipe, adapted from Ina Garten:


  • a chicken
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 large bunch fresh thyme
  • 1 lemon, halved
  • 1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
  • 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter, melted
  • 1 large yellow onion, thickly sliced
  • 4 carrots cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 1 bulb of fennel, tops removed, and cut into wedges [I didn’t do this, forgot to buy it]
  • Olive oil


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Remove the chicken giblets if present. Rinse the chicken inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pin feathers and pat the outside dry. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken. Stuff the cavity with 3/4 of the thyme, both halves of lemon, and all the garlic.

Brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken. Place the onions, carrots, and fennel in a roasting pan. Toss with salt, pepper, rest of the thyme, and olive oil. Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.

Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh. Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the vegetables.


§ 4 Responses to Roast chicken

  • […] new favorite thing is chipotle paste.  Also, this recipe is my current favorite use of left over roasted chicken – it is really really delicious, and (mostly?) healthy.  I am smitten with it.  Have you […]

  • As I told Aine, when my mom sent us off to college, she sent us with a packet entitled “how to live off a chicken for a week.” It involved roasted chicken, chicken a la king, chicken bbq pizza, chicken and rice soup, and chicken sandwiches, as i recall. i note that none of these are on the blog for linkbacks, which is something that will soon have to be remedied…

    • chickpea says:

      Please remedy! I am particularly interested in this ‘chicken a la king’ creature. Did we eat that out of a mylar bag after rehydrating it in Yellowstone while pretending to be astronauts, or was that some other chicken delicacy?

  • hahaha. we well may have. but i think it goes without saying that the mary goss version is much, much, much better. veggies, chicken and heavy whipping cream. mmmmm. heavy whipping cream.

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