This is the meal I make when I want the homey, Sunday evening roast experience but am short on time. I kid you not – this meal takes 15 minutes to put together and another 10 minutes prior to serving. It cooks unattended for 1 1/2 hours. I have a number of tricks that make this roast chicken especially delicious: roast it breast side down so that the white meat stays moist, put a cut lemon in the chicken while it roasts to create flavorful pan juices, take off the crisp back skin (there’s lots) and put it on top of the juicy white meat, and add more salt than you’d think necessary.
You may use other vegetables than the ones in the recipe. Potatoes, chunks of fresh tomato, and cauliflower florets also work well.
- 3 1/2 to 4 pound whole chicken
- 1 tablespoon herbes de Provence or 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary and 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1/2 cup olive oil, divided
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 lemon cut in half
- 1 pound brussel sprouts, whole, no need to cut off brown ends
- 2 large onions, peeled and cut into chunks (I cut in 1/2 and then cut each 1/2 into 6 pieces)
- 5 medium carrots, unpeeled and cut into large chunks (about 6 rounds per carrot or cut into 1/2 rounds for larger carrots)
- Preheat oven to 400°
- Rinse chicken (no need to pat dry) and put in a large roasting pan (about 12" x 18") breast side down.
- Pour herbs and 1 teaspoon of salt into the cavity of the chicken.
- In a small bowl stir together 2 tablespoons olive oil, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, pepper, and paprika. Spoon oil/seasoning mixture over outside of chicken and use your hands to distribute evenly. Use your hands to spread herbs and salt in chicken cavity as well. Add cut lemon halves to inside of chicken.
- Toss vegetables in large bowl with 1 teaspoon salt and 6 tablespoons olive oil. Distribute vegetables around chicken in roasting pan. Bake for 1 1/2 hours.
- Remove chicken and let stand on a cutting board, breast side down, while you remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon and put them around a large serving platter.
- Pour liquid in roasting pan into a fat separator measuring cup or into a bowl. Separate pan juices from the fat (scoop fat off the top of bowl if you don't have a fat separator). Pan juices may be served on the side in place of gravy or you may use them to add to gravy - see my recipe for Gluten-Free Gravy.
- Carefully remove crisp back skin and set aside. Carve chicken and place pieces in center of serving platter. Cut back skin into pieces and place on chicken breasts.
- Note: the breast skin will be pale and not worth eating. However, the back skin will be crisp and delicious.
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