Thursday, March 25, 2010

Spring Chicken

Spring has sprung! I made this simple roast chicken one night after coming home late, desperate for a quick, scrumptious meal. One of the reasons I love cooking is that you can improvise and so I was thrilled when my rogue chicken experiment turned out to be mouth-watering! It's one of those meals where everything on the plate kind of oozes together and tastes amazing on the same fork. I licked my plate clean.

Preheat your oven to 425 degrees.

You will need bone-in, skin-on organic chicken breasts. Billy and I usually share one, but I've also taken advantage of the "event" of cooking to roast two breasts and save one for leftovers. Using bone-in, skin-on breasts will give you tons of flavor, especially since you'll be roasting this at a high temperature. Pat them dry with paper towels (otherwise they won't brown).

Place the chicken breast(s) in a roasting pan and drizzle generously with olive oil. Using your hands, smear the olive oil all over so the entire breast is coated. Season well with salt and pepper. A little sprinkling of thyme is also nice. Place two whole, peeled garlic cloves underneath the chicken.

Peel and cut carrots (as many as you'd like) and arrange them around the chicken. Drizzle with olive oil (I have a heavy hand), salt and pepper. You need one lemon, and this is what I would do - squeeze half of the lemon over everything and then use your discretion with the other half, according to your taste. Lay the lemon halves in with the chicken and carrots, which adds to the flavor.

Now, up to this point things have been pretty healthy. If you're happy with the healthy factor then you're ready to go, but let's be honest, everything tastes better with butter. Only 2 T, melted and poured over the chicken breasts will create a crispy brown crust that adds to the overall "melt-in-your-mouth" experience. Use the butter.

Cover the chicken with foil and cook for 20 minutes. Take off the foil and cook for another 20-30 minutes.

Since my man loves potatoes, I roasted them right along side the chicken. Small yukon gold are the best - leave the skins on and quarter them. Olive oil, salt and pepper...toss with your hands. Be sure to stir them occasionally throughout the cooking process. Both the chicken and the potatoes should be done around the same time.

Parting words - folks, this recipe is not an exact science and having tried it numerous times without ever having written anything down, I see it as pretty much foolproof. Use your intuition, taste and mood to season as you see fit. Enjoy!

1 comment:

  1. CHRISSY CARTER...I now have you to thank not only for the most amazing vacation week I've had in years (see yoga retreat, Dominica, 2010), but for my entire Passover seder meal. I made the spring chicken for myself and my four guests on Tuesday and it came out spectacular. It was the first time I'd ever cooked chicken with bones and skin on, but I followed the instructions to the letter (except I forgot the butter - damn - next time) and it was a breeze. The roasted potatoes you made along with it sounded great, so I did those too...and roasted some tomatoes for good measure. Olive oil, salt, pepper on each component, and I threw a few sprigs of rosemary in with the potatoes. Everyone raved about the food and I had the most amazing leftovers for the next day. Just wanted to say thanks (and please keep posting your masterpieces so I can try them:) )! I love their elegant simplicity and it's all giving me hope that I can actually cook. You rock.