classics · dinner

>Roast Chicken with Herb Butter and White Wine

>I like posting recipes like this one because I think our generation is scared of the classics.  Maybe because we grew up eating full meals first pulled from a freezer and then ‘prepared’ in a microwave.  Maybe it’s because we are busy. Maybe it’s because we don’t think we can cook them as well as our mothers or grandmothers.  Well, I can’t argue with that last point – meals remembered are always better than meals self-prepared -however, I can say that it’s not as hard as we make it out to be.  And truthfully, though it takes a while to get to the finish line on this one, the bulk of the time doesn’t include you being anywhere near the kitchen.  The bird sits in the oven for 1.5 to 2 hours so really you have time to sit down, relax and enjoy some delicious smells wafting through the air while your dinner cooks away without your constant attention.

Roast Chicken with Herb Butter & White Wine

1 oven roaster
1 stick butter at room temperature
fresh herbs – rosemary, thyme, oregano, sage
olive oil
white wine (one you would drink)
root vegetables – parsnips, carrots, potatoes
salt & pepper

Parsnips add a touch of sweetness without breaking down like sweet potatoes.

Preheat the oven to 350°.  Start by taking the chicken out of the fridge and taking the chill off.  It’s important to remove whatever innards are left in the bird and to thoroughly pat it dry using some paper towels. The bird should be fully seasoned with salt and pepper all over, even inside the cavity.  Don’t be shy with the seasoning.  While the bird is coming up to room temp, strip the herbs from the stems and rough chop them into small pieces (reserve the stems, they can go into the roasting pan for flavor).  Add the herb mixture and a shake of salt and pepper to the softened butter until it is well blended. 

Starting with the breast side of the chicken, use your fingers to loosen the skin by running your fingers in between the meat and the skin.  This ‘pocket’ will hold a majority of the herb butter.  Push the butter mixture under the skin and massage into the chicken and do the same on the reverse side, spreading the butter all over the bird and under the skin where possible.  Be sure to also get some of the butter into the cavity of the bird.  Next, drizzle the breast side of the chicken with olive oil and lay it breast side down into a roasting pan. Cook this way for 15 minutes.

Sebastiani Roussanne – great with roasted vegetables

While the breast side of the chicken gets nice and toasty in the oven, cut the vegetables into bite size pieces and all roughly the same size. Season with salt and pepper and a drizzle of olive oil.

When the buzzer rings at 15 minutes, pull the chicken out of the pan and deglaze the bottom with about 1/2 cup to cup of white wine (while pouring, stir the wine and scrap the pan with a wooden spoon to release the brown bits from the bottom).  Transfer the veggies to the pan and add the chicken back in, either directly on top of the vegetables or on a roasting tray.  Depending on the size of the bird, it should remain in the oven for approximately 1.25 to 2 hours (follow timing instructions on packaging) or until juices run clear when a knife is inserted between the thigh and chicken breast. For added deliciousness, dip a basting brush in the wine/butter mixture formed at the bottom of the pan and baste the chicken 2-3 times during cooking process.  Also, allow the chicken to rest under foil or a paper grocery bag for 10-15 minutes before serving.

Too hungry to stop for a photo!

Tasty, tasty!  And if it’s just two of you like it is for us, you’ll have plenty of leftovers for the next night. Do you have a George Foreman grill? Try chicken paninis with fig spread and brie cheese. Yum!


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