… turkey is ok, in fact I totally see that it has its place at the extended family table but I’d still much prefer to roast 4 chickens that cook one turkey… there’s so much more flavour, it’s far less stressful because yore cooking a bird you understand and cook regularly and i’ve got to say it looks so impressive too bringing out 4 birds!… you’ll need larger roasting tins so that 2 chickens can share a tin but believe me this just makes everything taste better and with a lot less wastage. I would go by the maths that 1 large chicken feeds 4 people comfortably – that’s a Jewish ‘comfortably’ – your household may eat less… and still give you plenty of left-overs for the best bit about Christmas, the left-over sandwiches…
thai basil curry roast chicken with roasted carrots and cauliflowers
i’ve been working with and developing recipes for the good people at WorldFoods who create exceptionally good quality sauces, pastes and dips… this time we’re taking the lid off the traditional Christmas menu and trying something a little east of turkey. As you know I can be very picky when it comes to using this kind of store cupboard ingredient but because all of the WorldFoods products are organic, vegetarian and gluten free and all made in their country of origin and therefor have an exceptionally authentic and ‘home-made’ quality to them I have no problem using and recommending them… and of course because they’re ready-made they are unbelievably convenient, particularly at this time of year when convenience is the word of the moment!
so i’ve been thinking about jazzing up the christmas bird and this is so incredibly easy yet packs so much flavour into the meat that it seems as though you’ve been slaving away at a hot stove for hours… i’m roasting cauliflower in the tin along with the chicken plus potatoes and carrots… roasted cauliflower seems to be the veg of the moment and I can understand why, it takes what can be a bit of a dull vegetable and turns it into a monumental beauty… and of course cauliflower are grown here in the UK so you’re supporting your local farmer at this time of the year. You could do all the veg separately too and either slather these in the paste or roast them in a more traditional way for a bit of variety… remember these sauces are vegetarian friendly and so would work equally well served as part of a veggie christmas dish… this particular paste, the thai basil curry paste has a glorious sweetness to its heat that comes from the thai basil and it becomes so mellow and sticky with the chicken juices…
recipe for one roast chicken
one large free-range chicken
4 tablespoons WorldFoods Thai Basil Curry Paste
1 large onion – cut into eighths
2 carrots – cut into batons
a handful of roasting potatoes – skin on
1/2 cauliflower – divided into florets
pre-heat the oven to 190C
clean your bird by running boiling water over it and into the cavity – set aside
place the cut veg randomly into your roasting tin – use half the onion and place the other half of the cut onion into the carcass of the bird
place the bird on top of the veg and then, using your hands, rub the thai basil paste all over the bird – season well and drizzle with a little olive oil then cover the whole thing with foil and roast for 1 hour
remove the foil, turn the chicken over onto its breast, pour over a cup of water and roast for another 20 mins without the foil, then turn the chicken back over so that it’s breast side up and roast for a final 15 minutes – remove from oven and set aside for 10 mins covered in the foil.
serve with the veg from the roasting tin along with any extra green
eat and of course, enjoy!