Sunday, May 20, 2018

"Royal Engagement" Roast Chicken aka The Perfect Roast Chicken

Well everyone in the world knows what took place yesterday ... the Royal Wedding!   The wedding of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle was held in St George's Chapel at Windsor Castle in the United Kingdom.  

It was a beautiful event fully televised and I thoroughly enjoyed spending most of my Saturday infront of the tv.  Growing up, like most girls, there is always the dream that I would grow up and meet my Prince Charming, be swept off my feet and live life like a princess! So while I pottered around doing my usual "Princessy" things such as putting the groceries away, cleaning, cooking and menu prepping I watched on in awe (and I guess a little jealousy) an event that will change history.  

Sunday, as most of you know, is family roast dinner day at the House of Murry (now seriously how regal does that sound?) and when possible I ensure that we do sit down for a roast dinner.  Giving the Royal Celebrations this week I thought we would have the "Engagement Chicken" that Meghan Markle cooked for Prince Harry the night that he proposed.  

In an interview from People November 2017 it was revealed that Prince Harry got down on one knee to propose while the couple was at home making roast chicken, the origin of the dish was from famous celebrity chef  and host of the Barefoot Contessa, Ina Garten — and it’s one of Meghan’s go-to recipes.  Ina Garten couldn’t be more pleased that her recipe is now part of the royal couple’s love story.

This recipe has been around for quite sometime despite it's new found fame.  The original recipe which I followed was published on Food Network in 1999 however since gaining celebrity status it has been revamped and can be found here.

The roast chicken itself is quite a plain dish when you read the recipe.  It's quite simple and easy to prepare.  However the decadent flavours from the thyme, lemon and garlic lacing the tender juicy meat which are cooked on a bed of roasted fennel, onions and carrots that are enveloped in the stunning chicken flavours contradict the simplicity of what you read.

Needless to say if it was good enough for Meghan's Prince would be good enough for mine and our loyal subjects?

Yes it was definitely was......

"Royal Engagement" Roast Chicken aka Perfect Roast Chicken
(Recipe sourced Ina Garten: Food Network)

Serves: 6 - 8

2 kilogram roasting chicken
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 large bunch fresh thyme, plus additional 20 sprigs
1 lemon, halved
1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 large yellow onion, thickly sliced
4 carrots cut into 2-inch chunks
1 bulb of fennel, tops removed, and cut into wedges
Olive oil

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius.

Remove the chicken giblets. Rinse the chicken inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pin feathers and pat the outside dry. Liberally salt and pepper the inside of the chicken. Stuff the cavity with the bunch of thyme, both halves of lemon, and all the garlic.

Brush the outside of the chicken with the butter and sprinkle again with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken.

Place the onions, carrots, and fennel in a roasting pan. Toss with salt, pepper, 20 sprigs of thyme, and olive oil.

Spread around the bottom of the roasting pan and place the chicken on top.

Roast the chicken for 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between a leg and thigh. Remove the chicken and vegetables to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes.

Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve it with the vegetables (or get one of your royal followers to do it for you LOL).  Accompany with other vegetables as desired.

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