No frills roast chicken
( SERVES 6 )
Photo by Tam West
This produces a juicy roast chicken with fragrant stuffing and enough pan juices to use as a thin sauce or thicken lightly with cornflour for a more traditional gravy. The soy sauce is there to darken the pan juices and gives a savoury, umami flavour without dominating. The chicken is cooked when the internal temperature is 75C, or when a small knife inserted into the middle of the stuffing then withdrawn is too hot to touch. When the thigh is pierced to the bone with a small knife the juices should run clear. Serve with rice or roasted or boiled potatoes and one or two simply cooked green vegetables. The chicken should be tender enough to pull apart so, carving isn’t an issue.
- Heat the oven to 190C.
- Put the breadcrumbs, garlic, salt, yoghurt, parsley, 2 tablespoons of the oil and the rosemary or thyme into a bowl. Add a sprinkle of freshly ground black pepper and mix well. This is the stuffing.
- Cut the wing tips off the chicken and discard them.
- Stuff the stuffing into the chicken's body cavity. Pin the cavity closed with the skewer.
- Place the chicken, breast side down, in an ovenproof dish that will just hold it. Add the wine, water and soy sauce and drizzle the remaining oil over the top. Place in the oven for 45 minutes.
- Turn over and cook for a further 45 minutes, basting occasionally.
- Remove from the oven, place the chicken on a warm serving platter.
- Pour the pan juices into a jug to use as is, or thicken lightly by bringing to the boil and stirring in a little cornflour mixed to a thin slurry with cold water. Serve with the chicken.