Friday, July 2, 2010

Roasted chicken, carrots, spring onions, and blue potatoes

A lot of times, you hear cooks say a key to good cooking is to buy good ingredients, and try your best not to mess them up. This was one of those dinners. The farmers markets here in Chicago are in full swing, and just about everything I used in this dish except for the olive oil, butter, and lemons, came from either the local farmers market or the community garden. What I love about the farmers market is that when you buy something like a carrot, you have a huge variety to choose from. The same goes for just about every other vegetable or fruit, including the onions and potatoes I used in this dish. While roasted chicken and root vegetables are typically thought of as a fall or winter dish, the way I look at it, anything I get at the farmer's market is, by definition, seasonal cooking, and it tasted just as good on a warm summer evening as it would on a cold winter night.

Here's the recipe. It could not be more simple.

Brine the chicken (look up your favorite brine recipe online).
Remove from brine, pat dry, and let come to room temperature.
Season with salt and pepper, put a lemon wedge, herbs, and some smashed garlic cloves in the cavity.
Truss the chicken.
Toss the vegetables with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
In a 12 inch skillet, arrange the vegetables and place the chicken on top. Add a few lemon wedges to the skillet.
Drizzle a bit of olive oil over the chicken or place a couple pieces of butter on top of the chicken.
Roast in a 450 to 475F oven for 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 400F and continue to roast until the chicken breast is 160F.
Remove the chicken and let it rest on the cutting board for at least 15 minutes.
In the meantime, toss the vegetables in the pan to glaze them, and add any herbs. I used a bit of dill, chives, garlic scapes, and parsley.

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