Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Cookbook Challenge: Lemon Chicken with Croutons

This roast chicken recipe was another one from Barefoot in Paris, my Cookbook Challenge for April. It was a great roast chicken, but I don't know if that had anything to do with the recipe. It was a lemon roasted chicken, which mostly just meant there were lemons inside the cavity. Isn't this an old trick? It was roasted on a bed of sliced onions, which were a burned mess by the time the roasting was finished. The chicken was served with croutons, which I was open to trying. They were kind of boring, though, and I didn't really understand how they fit with chicken besides for presentation.

The chicken was incredibly moist, which made it a treat to eat. I think that was mostly because I've gotten better at determining when to take a roast chicken out of the oven, and I'm sure to let it sit for at least 10 or 15 minutes before cutting into the bird. I would roast a chicken like this again, but I wouldn't bother with the croutons. A basic recipe, but it was a treat to have a meal like this on a Monday night!

Lemon Chicken with Croutons from Barefoot in Paris by Ina Garten

1 (4 to 5-pound) roasting chicken
1 large yellow onion, sliced
Good olive oil
Kosher salt

Freshly ground black pepper
2 lemons, quartered

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
6 cups (3/4-inch) brea
d cubes (1 baguette or round boule)

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Take the giblets out of the chicken and wash it inside and out. Remove any excess fat and leftover pinfeathers. Toss the onion with a little olive oil in a small roasting pan. Place the chicken on top and sprinkle the inside of the cavity with salt and pepper. Place the lemons inside the chicken. Pat the outside of the chicken dry with paper towels, brush it with the melted butter, and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Tie the legs together with kitchen string and tuck the wing tips under the body of the chicken.

Roast for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours, or until the juices run clear when you cut between the leg and the thigh. Cover with foil and allow to sit at room temperature for 15 minutes. (The onions may burn, but the flavor is good.)

Meanwhile, heat a large saute pan with 2 tablespoons of olive oil until very hot. Lower the heat to medium-low and saute the bread cubes, tossing frequently, until nicely browned, 8 to
10 minutes. Add more olive oil, as needed, and sprinkle with 1/2
teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Place the croutons on a serving platter. Slice the chicken and place it, plus all the pan juices, over the croutons. Sprinkle with salt and serve warm.

I ended up making my chicken into a salad, since I was serving salad on the side of the dish originally. I guess I just couldn't get away from the idea of croutons being part of a salad. I served it with these beets, which I always enjoy.


Ally said...

Looks delicious, and I love the color on that bird!

A World in a PAN said...

Congratulations on this delicious recipe. You are very talented!

suze said...

this reminds me of a recipe i found online for roasted rosemary cornish game hens. i made them for ben and i. the lemon and rosemary inside the hens really permeated through the meat. the leftovers made great sandwiches!

your dessert recipes are really inspiring. i'm going to do more cooking when ben comes home so he can do the dishes ;).