Nothing beats a roast chicken that is tender, succulent, and ever so versatile! It is an affordable roast, and with extra veggies can stretch to feed a whole horde of family and friends. There is something about a simple roast chicken that appeals to everyone. An added bonus is that there is always a use for any leftover chicken. Serves 4
- 1.5 kg roasting chicken
- Salt and freshly-ground black pepper
- 2 medium onions, peeled cut into quarters
- 1 lemon, cut into wedges
- 3 – 4 large cloves
- garlic, peeled and crushed
- 4 sprigs fresh rosemary or thyme
- 30 ml butter, margarine or olive oil
- 500 ml chicken stock or water
- Preheat oven to 190ºC/170ºC fan/ Gas mark 5.
- Remove the giblets and excess fat from the chicken cavity. Rinse chicken inside and out, under cold, running water. Dry chicken with a paper towel.
- Tuck the wing tips under the chicken. Season the cavity of the chicken.
- Insert onions, lemon wedges, garlic cloves, and herbs into the cavity. Place chicken in roasting pan, on a roasting rack.
- Truss chicken with string if desired, by bringing chicken legs forward, crossing them, and tying them together. Truss the wings to the body if it is a large bird.
- Spread the softened butter, margarine or olive oil over the entire surface of the chicken, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
- Place in the preheated oven, and roast until skin is deep golden brown and crisp, and the juices run clear when pierced; about 1½ hours. When chicken is done, the drumstick should move freely when wiggled.
- Remove chicken from oven, and transfer to a chopping board.
- Allow chicken to stand 10 to 15 minutes, enabling the juices to settle.
- Meanwhile, make a gravy with the pan juices, a little cake flour, and the chicken stock or water. Season to taste.
- Untie the legs; remove and discard onions, lemon, garlic, and herbs. Carve, and serve gravy on the side.
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