Roasting a chicken…although daunting in name is really quite simple…and easily done on a weeknight. A roast chicken also provides leftovers a-plenty for the rest of the week’s lunches.
This recipe is a take on an Ina Garten recipe for the Perfect Roast Chicken. First, remove giblets from the cavity. Cut up vegetables, including new potatoes, carrots and red onions…and place them in the roasting pan with a little olive oil and salt and pepper. Preheat the oven to 425º F and begin seasoning the chicken.
Use whatever herbs you have on hand – and use them liberally. I tucked two large basil leaves under the skin on the breasts, and tucked a few chunks of onion and carrot into the chicken cavity along with some butter, a sizable amount of salt, some pepper and a few sprigs of rosemary and basil leaves. Make sure to season the outside of the chicken with salt, pepper, herbs and rub the skin with a little softened butter as well. Tuck the wings underneath and then tie the legs together (or use high-tech hot pink silicon bindings like I did).
While you wait for your chicken to roast, why not enjoy some of the last tomatoes of the year (yep, we’ve still got them…not trying to brag!) in a refreshing caprese salad drizzled with some Arbequina olive oil and some aged balsamic vinegar.
The chicken will only take between 60 to 90 minutes…you can check it with a thermometer, or wiggle the drumstick, or check to see if the juices run clear – really whatever you’re comfortable with. You can always crank on the broiler for the last few minutes if the skin doesn’t look deliciously toasty, crispy and caramel in color. Remove the chicken from the pan and set aside to let rest.
At this point you can check the vegetables for doneness and seasoning.
Carve up the chicken and bring to the table along with the vegetables for serving. I had a surplus of green beans from our CSA – so I quick-roasted them with a little olive oil on high heat once the chicken came out of the oven.
Sit down and enjoy. (And then enjoy for lunch the next day as chicken salad, or as a pasta salad with chicken, or slice for a chicken sandwich, etc. – you get the idea!)