“This is a classic Sunday dinner that the whole family will love. It’s super simple too. Always try to buy the best quality chicken you can afford – aim for RSPCA-Assured birds as a minimum, then trade up when you can. I’ve seen the way low-standard chickens are kept and I’d never feed them to my kids. ”
- 500 g carrots
- 600 g potatoes
- 1 bulb of garlic
- 5 sprigs of fresh rosemary
- olive oil
- 1 x 1.6 kg whole free-range chicken
- 1 lemon
- 5 sprigs of fresh thyme
- Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/gas 7.
- Scrub, trim and halve the carrots lengthways.
- Scrub, peel and halve the potatoes, quartering any larger ones. Add to a large roasting tray.
- Break the garlic bulb into cloves, leaving them unpeeled, then lightly crush with the flat side of a knife. Pick the rosemary leaves, discarding the stalks. Add the garlic and rosemary leaves to the tray.
- Drizzle with oil, season with sea salt and black pepper, then toss well and spread out in an even layer.
- Rub the chicken all over with a pinch of salt and pepper and a drizzle of oil. Stuff the chicken cavity with the whole lemon and the thyme sprigs.
Place the chicken in the tray, on top of the vegetables.
- Reduce the oven temperature to 200ºC/400ºF/gas 6, then add the chicken and roast for 45 minutes.
- Carefully remove the tray from the oven, use tongs to turn the vegetables over, then spoon any juices from the tray over the chicken.
- Return the tray to the oven for a further 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through. To check, pierce a chicken thigh with the tip of a sharp knife – if the juices run clear, it’s done. Otherwise return the tray to the oven, cook for a little while longer and repeat the test.
- Once cooked, transfer the chicken to a board and return the vegetables to the oven for a final 5 minutes to crisp up, if needed.
- Cover the chicken with a layer of tin foil and a tea towel, then leave to rest for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Using a sharp carving knife, carve up the chicken, then serve with the roasted veg. Delicious with a green salad on the side.
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The beauty of cooking the whole bird, is you’ll have leftovers for more
meals later in the week – shred the meat into stir-fries or sandwiches or
boil up the carcass for chicken soup.
Source: Jamie Oliver