NYT Project: Elizabeth Frink’s Roast Lemon Chicken

28 Nov

With so many ways to roast up a chicken, sometimes I find it a little overwhelming to choose one. Fortunately, the NYT Cookbook had a recipe that looked both delicious and simple. I think I may have used a bit too much salt in seasoning the bird, as the pan juices, when reduced, were overly sodium-ized. (Sure…that’s a word.) I tend to err on the side of using more seasoning than less as I’m disappointed when bland food arrives at the table. However, because flavours intensify when you reduce them, the salt flavour increased in the pan juices and even after cutting them with more water, I still couldn’t use them. Ah well – next time!

The bird itself, though, was fantastic. The vibrant lemon flavour came through and the meat was tender and juicy. I used cilantro instead of parsley, as that’s what I happened to have in the fridge and what I prefer to use in general. Either parsley or cilantro work well with chicken, lemon and garlic, so feel free to use either. I predict this recipe will be rotated in to my regular rotation!

Ingredients

1 3lb chicken
1/2 ts salt
1/4 ts black pepper
2 lemons
6 cloves garlic
2 tb unsalted butter
2 tb olive oil
1 tb flat leaf parsley, coarsely chopped, plus extra for garnish

Directions

1. Preheat your oven to 325F.
2. Place the chicken in a large baking dish and season inside and out with salt and pepper.
3. Remove the skin from one lemon with a peeler and rub the skin over the outside  of the chicken. Quarter the rest of the lemon and squeeze over the chicken. Place the lemon pieces and garlic cloves inside the bird.
4. Melt the butter with the olive oil in a small pan. Pour about one-third of the mixture inside the chicken.  Tie the legs together with kitchen string and pour the remaining mixture over the chicken.
5. Roast the chicken for 90 minutes or until a meat thermometer reads 165F, basting every 15 minutes with the juices from the pan. Half an hour before the bird is done, pour juice from the second lemon over it and sprinkle with parsley.
6. When done, transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let it sit for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, pour 1/2c water/broth into the roasting pan and place it over high heat. As it comes to a boil, scrape up the pan drippings with a wooden spoon. Reduce the juices to the desired consistency and season to taste with salt and pepper.
7. Carve the chicken and serve the sauce on the side.

*side note – the leftovers make for excellent chicken sandwiches – assuming you’ve got any chicken left!

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