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  • Writer's pictureBenjamin MacShane

Roast Chickens can be anything you want.

Roast Chickens can be anything you want. They can be basic, they can be boring, they can bring the heat or work for any season. Really, making a roast chicken isn’t about the chicken, it’s about you. What do you want to get out of it? Do you want it to be the main event and relegate the side dishes to be just that – side dishes? Or maybe you’re more keen for meat and veg to stand up together, side by side, each packed with flavour and oozing class? The choice, now and always, is yours.

The Chicken. Be sure to prep on a plastic chopping board.

Take out of the fridge 20min before cooking.

First, cut off the knuckle on each leg. This to help the skin tighten during cooking and you get the nice drum stick.

The crispiness of the skin is dependent on two stages. First, pat as dry as you can the bird. Rub the bird in oil, mustard and paprika and season with salt and pepper.

The Stuffing.

I would suggest a Mediterranean stuffing. If you fry up cannellini beans with some fennel, onion, garlic and sundried tomatoes you can then stuff that into the bird, along with a lemon. This will help the inside of the bird stay moist.


Cover the chicken in foil and roast at 200 degrees. After 1 hour take the foil off as this will help crisp the skin.

Sides dishes.

Whilst the chicken is starting to roast. Part boil (15min) some baby potatoes with salt and baking powder. This should be washed and roughly chopped before hand. When you take them out of the water, toss them in the colander so that the skin blisters. Put them in a baking tray with rosemary and thyme. Cover in oil (not butter) to help them get crispy.

For the chimchurri. Chop parsley, coriander, mint, a green chilli (opt green pepper), garlic and bathe in olive oil, lemon juice and white wine vinegar. This green mosaic should sit in an oily bath. Season.

For the cheese sauce – a blue cheese (gorgonzola is best) and milk in a wee pot shortly before the meal is ready.

You could also make fagiolini which is a tomato sauce with green beans. See here

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