Now that January has arrived, that means two things – colder weather and healthier eating.  As we ended our New Year’s day celebrations, we were welcomed in the morning with several inches of snow on the ground.  It was the type of winter day where you didn’t want to step a foot outside if you could help it.  And what is the best cure for that bone chilling weather? Comfort food, of course!

oven roasted chickenBut since January also consists of the New Year’s Resolution of eating more wholesome, natural, and healthier foods, we put away the thoughts of meatloaf, creamed chicken and noodles over mashed potatoes, or baked macaroni and cheese.  Instead – we went with one of the easiest and healthiest comfort dishes you can prepare – Roasted Chicken!  It’s simple to prepare, delicious to eat, and the aroma that will fill your home will remind you of your Grandmother’s kitchen.

So as we begin the new year with a healthier take on our recipes, don’t be afraid to experiment with your own twist of this recipe.  Add your favorite spices or a few extra vegetables to make it unique to your own family’s liking. The real key is to end up with crisp skin and juicy meat. And if you are looking for extra crispy skin, rub the chicken skin with salt the night before you roast it. If you are nervous about always making sure your chicken has reached that “safe” cooking temperature, invest in an inexpensive digital probe thermometer. This tool makes it a breeze to know all meats have reached that perfect temperature!

And don’t forget – after that meal – make sure to save the bones and any roasted veggies to make your own chicken stock! (see: How to make your own chicken stock).

How to Roast a Chicken

Ingredients:

1 Roaster Chicken approx. 4-5 lbs (organic is best)
1 lemon
olive oil
2 whole onions
4-5 garlic cloves
Vegetables of your choice – carrots, potatoes, celery, etc…
Salt and Pepper to taste – additional seasonings as desired

Instructions:

preheat oven to 425 degrees F

*It is best to place your chicken at room temperature for approximately 30 minutes prior to preparing

1. Clean out the cavity of the chicken

2. Pat the chicken dry – inside and out

3. Rub olive oil over the skin – on all sides

4. Season with salt and pepper (or additional seasonings as desired) *You can also add olive oil and seasonings between the skin and the breasts

5. Place a wire rack in the roaster pan. *If you do not have a rack, you can place it on the bottom of the pan on top of the onions, carrots, potatoes, etc…  We find that using a rack helps the chicken cook more evenly.

6. Season the inside of the cavity with salt and pepper. Stuff it with 1/2 of an onion that is quartered, the juice of half a lemon, and the remaining half of the lemon itself, carrots and celery.  You can also add thyme, rosemary, or any other seasoning that you prefer. Tie legs together with cooking twine that has been soaked in water.

7. Place lid on the roaster and place in oven for 45 minutes.

8. In the meantime, prepare your vegetables – cutting them into large chunks.  Toss in olive oil and season with salt and pepper and the juice of half a lemon.

9. Once the chicken has roasted for 45 minutes, open the lid and scatter the vegetables on the bottom of the roasting pan.  Replace the lid and continue to roast for an additional hour.

Rustic chicken soup
Place the chicken on a carving plate, and let rest under a foil tent for 20 minutes before carving.

10. With roasting at this high of a temperature, we do not have to remove the lid to brown the skin.  However, every pan is different, so check your chicken after a total roasting time of 1 hour, 15 minutes and remove the lid to brown as needed.

11. Once the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F, remove from oven and let rest on a carving plate under a foil tent for 20 minutes before carving.

**If you have leftovers, remove the meat of the bone for use in recipes later in week.  (We never have this luxury – unless we make an extra chicken!)

Enjoy!

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Mary and Jim

How to Roast a Chicken

Ingredients

  • 1 Roaster Chicken approx. 4-5 lbs organic is best
  • 1 lemon
  • olive oil
  • 2 whole onions
  • 4-5 garlic cloves
  • Vegetables of your choice - carrots potatoes, celery, etc...
  • Salt and Pepper to taste - additional seasonings as desired

Instructions

  1. preheat oven to 425 degrees F
  2. Clean out the cavity of the chicken
  3. Pat the chicken dry - inside and out
  4. Rub olive oil over the skin - on all sides
  5. Season with salt and pepper (or additional seasonings as desired) *You can also add olive oil and seasonings between the skin and the breasts
  6. Place a wire rack in the roaster pan. *If you do not have a rack, you can place it on the bottom of the pan on top of the onions, carrots, potatoes, etc... We find that using a rack helps the chicken cook more evenly.
  7. Tie together with cooking twine that has been soaked in water.
  8. Tie together with cooking twine that has been soaked in water.
  9. Season the inside of the cavity with salt and pepper. Stuff it with 1/2 of an onion that is quartered, the juice of half a lemon, and the remaining half of the lemon itself, carrots and celery. You can also add thyme, rosemary, or any other seasoning that you prefer. Tie legs together with cooking twine that has been soaked in water.
  10. Place lid on the roaster and place in oven for 45 minutes.
  11. In the meantime, prepare your vegetables - cutting them into large chunks. Toss in olive oil and season with salt and pepper and the juice of half a lemon.
  12. Once the chicken has roasted for 45 minutes, open the lid and scatter the vegetables on the bottom of the roasting pan. Replace the lid and continue to roast for an additional hour.
  13. With roasting at this high of a temperature, we do not have to remove the lid to brown the skin. However, every pan is different, so check your chicken after a total roasting time of 1 hour, 15 minutes and remove the lid to brown as needed.
  14. Once the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F, remove from oven and let rest on a carving plate under a foil tent for 20 minutes before carving.

Recipe Notes

It is best to place your chicken at room temperature for approximately 30 minutes prior to preparing
Recipe courtesy of Old World Garden Farms

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