I recently had a bought of a nasty stomach virus which kept me away from the blog and also gave me a sketchy stomach for several days. When I’m feeling sick I always seem to crave comfort food – macaroni & cheese, mashed potatoes, fried chicken. You know, things that taste good but are not particularly figure friendly. And given these spring like temperatures we are experiencing in Chicago I am reminded that swimsuit weather is quickly approaching so I need to start preparing healthier meals.
I’ve been wanting to roast a chicken for quite some time now and I figured a juicy, moist roast chicken served with some sweet potato fries would provide a healthy alternative to curb my craving for some comfort food. And, the bonus with a roasting a chicken is that I get to make a delicious salad with the leftover chicken. I have to say, the chicken was wonderful and the sweet potato fries were even better than I expected. Even if you don’t like sweet potatoes I guarantee you will like these fries! I want to acknowledge Giada De Laurentiis from the Food Network for the chicken recipe – as you may be beginning to tell she is one of my faves! Hope you enjoy these recipes – I know I will be making them again in my household.
Roasted Chicken with Garlic and Citrus
- 1 (5 to 6-pound) whole roasting chicken
- Salt and pepper
- 1 orange, quartered
- 1 lemon, quartered
- 1 head garlic, halved crosswise, plus 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- Chicken broth ( approximately 28oz.)
- 1/4 cup frozen orange juice concentrate, thawed
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 tsps. dried oregano (use more if you are using fresh oregano)
- Kitchen string
Preheat oven to 400F and place rack in center of oven.
Remove neck & giblets from chicken (discard), pat dry the chicken and season with salt and pepper (inside and outside). Stuff the cavity with the quartered lemon, quartered orange and garlic head. You may have some difficulty getting everything inside the chicken which is okay, just place any remaining items in the bottom of the roasting pan.
Place chicken (breast side up) on rack of roasting pan. Pour a small amount of chicken broth on the bottom of the roasting pan to keep pan juices from burning. Tie legs of chicken together with kitchen string to help hold its shape. Place chicken in oven and roast for 1 hour. Baste occasionally and continue to add chicken broth to pan as needed to keep pan juices from burning.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl mix together orange juice concentrate, lemon juice, olive oil, chopped garlic and oregano. After the chicken has cooked for an hour, brush this mixture over the chicken. Return to the oven and cook for an additional 45-60 mins, until a meat thermometer reads 170F. Continue to baste the chicken during this time, adding chicken broth to the bottom of the pan and brushing with the orange juice mixture.
Once the chicken has cooked, transfer to a platter and tent with foil. Do NOT discard the juice from the bottom of your roasting pan. Place the roasting pan directly on your stove over medium low heat. Whisk in any remaining broth ( I added about 1.5 cups) and any additional orange juice mixture you may have leftover. Cook this until it has reduced to approximately one cup of liquid (stirring often). Once reduced, strain liquid into a bowl to remove any solids. Spoon fat from top of sauce and serve pan sauce with chicken.
- Sweet potatoes (approximately 1 per person)
- Olive oil
- Brown Sugar
- Kosher salt
- Chili powder
Preheat oven to 425F.
Cut sweet potatoes into wedges. Approximately 8-12 wedges per potato. Just be sure to cut all the wedges the same size so the potatoes cook evenly.
Toss the wedges with enough olive oil to coat. Sprinkle with salt, brown sugar and chili powder. The amount will really depend on how many potatoes you are making. I made two potatoes using approximately two tsps. of brown sugar, two tsps. salt and 1/4 tsp chili powder. Certainly adjust these measurements depending on how sweet or spicy you like it! If you like things extra spicy, a pinch of cayenne pepper would do the trick.
Spread evenly on a baking sheet and cook for approximately 30 minutes, turning once during cooking.