My local Publix had a buy one get one free special on whole chicken roasters, so of course I took advantage of the deal. I finally decided to use one of my 3 1/2 lb. chickens for dinner tonight. I don't have a roasting rack, and not even a nice roasting pan. I decided that I would use the rack of my toaster oven as a substitute, and set it in a 9 x 13 glass casserole. ( Sometimes you just have to work with what you have!!!)
The chicken came out very juicy and tender, and the skin was browned just enough (although, I like it a little more than pictured).
Since I had made a pretty heavy side the night before, I decided to make something a little bit healthier for tonight. My first thought was barley. I absolutely love barley! It is such a versatile grain. It can be used for risotto's, salads, stuffings, etc. Thankfully my picky, dear husband loves it as well. I prepared the barley pretty simple, because I knew I would be making a delicious pan gravy to top it with which would give it tons of flavor.
I picked up some baby broccoli the other day from Trader Joe's and I couldn't wait to eat it. My dear husband isn't a fan of broccoli, so I roasted fresh snap beans in the same pan as my broccoli to complete his meal.
Roasted Whole Chicken
- 1 3-4 lb chicken
- half a medium sized vidalia roughly chopped
- 5 garlic cloves removed from skin
- 1 stalk of celery roughly chopped
- 1 lemon
- 1/2 stick of unsalted butter room temperature
- 2 Tbs. fresh basil
- 1 Tbs. Fresh oregano
- 1 Tbs. Fresh parsley
- 2 Sprigs fresh thyme removed from stem and chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- Coarse Salt and Fresh ground White pepper (plus 1 Tbs. peppercorns)
- Note: save 1 tbs. fresh herbs for barley
Remove giblets from the cavity of the chicken(save to make stock later), and wash the body under cold water. Pat dry.
Mix butter with the fresh herbs and set aside. Stuff the cavity of the chicken with onion, garlic, celery bay leaves and pepper corns. Roll the lemon to release the juices and slice in 1/2. Squeeze 1/2 of the lemon over the entire chicken and then stuff it in the cavity. Repeat with the other 1/2.
Take the butter and massage the entire chicken and try to get under the skin. Generously salt and pepper the entire bird, put in roasting pan or rack and roast for 1 hour (check temp at 50 min. since ovens may vary)
- 1 cup pearl barley
- 1 shallot minced
- 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 Tbs. fresh herbs
- 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
Melt butter in a medium sized sauce pan over medium high heat. Add shallots and saute for 1 minute. Add Chicken stock and let come to a boil. Add barley and fresh herbs. Let boil for a minute or so, and reduce to low and let simmer for 30-40 minutes (mine was done in 35)
Pan Gravy (I'm a gravy girl... love it!)
- Drippings from chicken (plus browned bits Came to about 1/2 cup)
- 1 1/2 C. Chicken Stock
- 2 Tbs. flour
Note: This is where I had to be creative since I do not own a nice roast pan. I actually used my toaster oven rack and a 9 x 13 casserole. So I wasn't able to put the casserole over a burner, but the gravy, oh the gravy.... It was divine!!!
Remove chicken from pan and cover with foil and let rest. Pour drippings and browned bits (you may have to scrape) into a container and try to remove as much fat as possible. Add to a small sauce pan and heat over medium heat. Add flour and whisk until you have a smooth roux. Add Chicken stock slowly, whisking constantly while it simmers and thickens. Remove from heat when you reach the desired consistency.
- 3 spears baby broccoli
- 1 tsp. olive oil
- dash garlic powder
- salt and pepper
line a small baking pan with foil, season broccoli with salt, pepper and garlic powder. add the olive oil and toss. Roast for 15 minutes. (in the same oven at 375)