Cook the perfect roast chicken with crunch factor
THE thing about roasts is they take time. People often mistake this for difficulty, but that's not the case.
You just need to start cooking early and then you are free to get on with other things.
I usually use spatchcock (small chickens) for this recipe but, because you often have to pre-order them ahead with the butcher, I have gone for chicken marylands, which are usually available on the pre-pack shelf at the supermarket.
The key to this recipe is really good garlic. Get garlic that is really fresh and pungent and preferably Australian because it will be younger and tastier.
In this recipe, I've used dried rosemary leaves because they are nice and handy but nothing beats freshly picked herbs.
So if you can get your hands on the fresh stuff, go for it. Use three tablespoons of leaves picked from the branches.
Of course you can use any vegetables you like.
Select the freshest seasonal produce you can find and prepare them your favourite way.
Although I roasted the potatoes, I haven't gone for the full gamut of roast vegetables because it's far too warm for that.
Instead I grabbed carrots and brussel sprouts and cooked them lightly so they retained a little crunch.
Roast chicken with rosemary and garlic gravy
4 chicken marylands
4 tbs dried rosemary leaves
6 tbs flour
2 tbs butter
Salt and pepper
2 heads of garlic
4 medium potatoes, quartered
4 serves of your favourite seasonal vegetables prepared your preferred way
½ litre chicken stock
1 tbs red wine vinegar
Place potatoes in a saucepan of cold water and bring to the boil.
Simmer until they are cooked through but still firm. Strain and put back in saucepan.
Season potatoes with salt and pepper and add a splash of oil and the butter to the saucepan.
Put the lid on the saucepan, give it a good shake.
Spread the potatoes in a baking dish and put into a 220C oven. Season 4tbs flour with salt and pepper and then coat chicken with flour.
Heat oil in a pan and brown chicken pieces.
Break up heads of garlic into cloves, leaving the skin on the cloves but getting rid of any skin that falls off.
Spread the cloves over the base of a heatproof dish.
Add the chicken pieces to the dish, sprinkle with rosemary and drizzle oil over the top of the chicken and garlic.
Reduce oven to 200C and place chicken in it. Cook for about 35 minutes and then return oven to 220C.
Remove baking dish from the oven and take out the chicken pieces, setting them aside.
Using the back of a spoon, squash garlic cloves so the garlic comes out of the skin. Remove the skins from the dish.
Heat the dish on the stove top, add 2 tbs of flour, stock and vinegar and stir over medium heat until thickened.
Serve up chicken, potatoes and your choice of other vegetables with the gravy drizzled over the top.