Ina Garten is a goddess, er, Contessa, when it comes to cooking. I have yet to try a single bad recipe from her. Everything is perfectly seasoned and easy to prepare. This roast chicken recipe is amazingly easy and always comes out so moist, even moister than beer can chicken on the grill. Ina shares my love of all things lemon, but the lemon flavor is just a nuance, perfection.
The recipe calls for carrots, fennel and onions. I wasn't feeling roast vegetables today, so we had corn on the cob and sauteed zucchini. I made the corn and zucchini while the chicken was resting. Boil the corn for approximately 3-5 minutes. Saute the zucchini in 1 teaspon of olive oil with dried Italian herbs.
Perfect Roast Chicken
1 (5 to 6 pound) roasting chicken
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large bunch fresh thyme
1 lemon, halved
1 head garlic, cut in half crosswise
2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) butter, melted
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
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.
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 to a platter and cover with aluminum foil for about 20 minutes. Slice the chicken onto a platter and serve.
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