Over the years, I’ve devised a few meals that make for a great Sunday family feast and also can sustain at least one other meal throughout the week.
My kids are the ultimate test of any recipe’s sustainability in our household, so when I find one that is nutritious, seasonal and more local than not, AND my kids will eat it not only once, but possibly twice (or more if it can be made into other tasty dishes, which this one can), it is worth recording it.
One that has developed into our Fall and Winter favorite is roasted chicken with roasted vegetables . . .
It makes the whole house smell delicious and the leftover meat makes a great chicken salad or if I save the carcass, the base of my infamous healing chicken soup. I’m sure you have your own favorite roast chicken roast leftover recipes (unless of course you are a vegan, in which case you might appreciate the roasted veggie part of this recipe best).
organic, free-ranging, as local as you can get it chicken
whole garlic cloves
(whatever roasting veggies you like best!)
fresh ground pepper
Preheat oven to 350° and put rack in center of oven. Rinse the little bugger inside and out (remember to thank it for its sacrifice while trying not to be too grossed out by the whole scene – my beloved Wayne takes care of this for me – thank God!) and remove neck and other icky bits in the bag. Pat it dry and place in a roasting pan. Rub butter all over the naked beast. Salt & pepper liberally. Surround the chicken with the vegetables (instructions below) not too much so they don’t cook well – don’t worry, you will be using an additional pan for more veggies too. Tent with foil (for first half hour only) and place in oven. The rule of thumb I use is 20 minutes per pound and/or when a thermometer jammed in the thick of the thigh is 175° – 180°.
NOTE: Make sure you un-tent at least a half hour before it is due to be finished and then, baste it pretty regularly to get a nice golden brown, delicious skin.
Wash, scrape and dry everything accordingly. Chop into smaller size chunks – no bigger than about 1-inch square. I usually half or quarter the mushrooms. Peel and nip off the ends of the garlic, but keep them whole so those that have an adverse reaction to these delicious treats can enjoy the flavor as it mixes with the other veggies without too much intestinal trauma. The amounts of which veggies you use is really a personal choice. But, I usually end up with 4 – 6 cups of chopped veggies in a nice large mixing bowl. Pour in some olive oil – enough to cover everything, but not too much. Salt & pepper to taste and mix it all up. Put some around and even in the chicken and get an additional pan (large glass baking pan works for me) and arrange them in almost a single layer if possible. Spray it with olive oil spray and bake along side or in rack beneath the chicken.
NOTE: Don’t leave extra veggie pan in oven for much more than 1 hour as they can get too burnt.
We usually serve this with a brown rice pilaf. WARNING: there is never enough veggies! So, if you are able to, make another pan of them.
eat. blog. be merry!