Keep it simple, the classic roast chicken is something everybody should know, straightforward it may be, but nothing quite beats the sight and smell of a golden crispy skinned chicken, served with bacon wrapped chipolata sausages, velvety bread sauce, sage and onion stuffing and oodles of gravy.
Heat the oven to at 220C, 425F, gas mark 7.
Have a shelf ready in the middle of the oven without any shelves above it. Spread out the vegetables over the bottom of a roasting tin.
Season the cavity of the chicken generously with salt and pepper, then stuff with the lemon halves and thyme.
Rest the chicken on the vegetables, and brush all over with the melted butter, and then season the outside with salt and pepper.
Place in the oven and leave, in peace, for 10 minutes reduce the heat to 190?c, 375F, gas mark 5, and then cook for 1 hour and 10 minutes this will produce you with a perfectly roasted chicken, golden and crisp on the outside and hence succulent on the inside. To check, pierce the thigh with a skewer and the juices should run clear.
Remove the roasting tin from the oven and, using a pair of tongs, lift the chicken to a platter or board to rest for between 12 and 15 minutes. As you pick up the platter, permit any juices from the chicken to pour out of the cavity into the roasting tin.
While the chicken is resting, make the gravy, place the roasting tin over a low flame, then stir in the flour and sizzle until you have a light brown roux. Slowly tip in the stock, stirring all the time, until you have a thickened gravy, simmer for 2 to 3 minutes using a wooden spoon to stir, scraping any sticky bits from the roasting tin.
Strain the gravy into a small saucepan, then simmer and season to taste, as soon as you carve the bird, add any extra juices to the gravy.
Enjoy with all the trimmings, roasties, and vegetables.
These days, we have a decent array of chickens. If you want the cheap and cheerful alternative, it?s still there, but for the greatest taste, it is worth paying a little more for corn-fed, organic, or free-range chicken. The flesh will be less flabby, too, as the bird has had a chance to wander around; building up muscle and with muscle there is texture and heaps of flavour.
For the best results, cook the chicken for 10 minutes, then turn the oven down to 190?c, 375?f, gas mark 5 and allow 45 minutes per kilo, plus 20 minutes. Serve 300 grams oven-ready weight per person, slightly less if you want leftovers for chicken salad or sandwiches the next day, which we always do.
One of the main dangers when cooking chicken is the risk of salmonella. To avoid this, always defrost a chicken thoroughly, and stuff the neck end only (not the cavity) and make sure it is cooked through (to do this, insert a skewer into the thickest part of the leg and if the juices run clear, the chicken is cooked). A good tip is to cut through the skin between the legs and the breasts halfway through cooking.
When stuffing the neck cavity only add this to the total weight before roasting, a halved lemon or onion, or a few fresh herb sprigs in the cavity will add to the flavour, for that classic golden crispy skin brush the chicken with melted butter before putting into the oven.
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|Serving Size: 1 Serving (376g)|
|Recipe Makes: 6 Servings|
|Calories from Fat: 551 (71%)|
|Amt Per Serving||% DV|
|Total Fat 61.2g||82 %|
|Saturated Fat 25.5g||127 %|
|Monounsaturated Fat 21.8g|
|Polyunsanturated Fat 9.1g|
|Cholesterol 249.6mg||77 %|
|Sodium 409.9mg||14 %|
|Potassium 640mg||17 %|
|Total Carbohydrate 7.9g||2 %|
|Dietary Fiber 1.8g||7 %|
|Sugars, other 6.2g|
|Protein 48.5g||69 %|
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Calories per serving: 779
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