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Christmas month: Roasted Chicken Dinner

Ankita Vaidya
Written by Ankita Vaidya
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‘It’s the most wonderful time of the year… There’ll be parties for hosting. Marshmallows for toasting… and caroling out in the snow…’ Okay maybe there is no snow outside in India, but don’t let that stop you from jingling the bells.

You know why?

Coz, ‘He’s making a list, And checking it twice, he’s gonna find out who’s naughty and nice. Santa Claus is coming to town’.

I feel like it was just the beginning of 2018 a few weeks ago… and now we are all set to step into 2019. We can either regret over lost opportunities or get excited about December. And I can hardly contain my excitement as this is the month of celebration, parties, entertaining, gifts, decorating, caroling and of course, Santa! So how are you going to WOW your guests this time? Tired of regular Indian meals and finger foods?

Here is a recipe that uses traditional ingredients yet very European. It’s the festive Chicken Roast Dinner. A perfect meal for when a large family sits down at the table. Whole roasted chicken, roasted garlic mashed potatoes, honey and cinnamon glazed carrots, spiced cauliflower and chicken gravy!! Oh ya, that’s the main course! So ready to make a shopping list?

(Serves 4 to 5 portions)

Roasted Chicken

Ingredients:

1 whole chicken, skin on

10 cloves garlic, smashed

5 sprigs thyme

5 sprigs rosemary

2 tbsp Butter, melted

Salt

Pepper

Method:

  1. Tie up the chicken legs with a twine so that they stay together, tuck the wing tips behind the breast. Rub some salt, pepper and butter on the chicken. Throw the herbs and garlic inside the chicken, use some herbs to rub the skin as well.
  2. Preheat oven to 375F. Put the chicken in and cook for around 40 to 45 min. Or until completely cooked.
  3. To check the internal temperature of the chicken, use a probing thermometer. It should read 165F or more.
  4. Take the chicken out and cover it with a tin foil. Let it rest before you start carving.
  5. If chicken is cooked ahead of time (say an hour or two max), hold it in the oven at 150F. You can crush the roasted herbs on top after it comes out/before serving.

 

Roasted garlic mashed potatoes

Ingredients:

3 large white potatoes

1 bulb of garlic

Salt

Pepper

¾ cup full fat milk

4 tbsp butter

2 tbsp chopped chives

Method:

  1. Boil potatoes until completely cooked.
  2. Meanwhile, in an oven, wrap a garlic bulb in tin foil with some olive oil and sea salt. Bake in the oven for 30 min. When garlic is roasted, it smells sweet.
  3. Once the garlic is ready, take out all the garlic pulp in a pot. Add the milk and half the butter in it. Bring to a boil, then simmer.
  4. Peel, and whip the boil potatoes using a hand mixer. Slowly pour the garlic-cream mix into whipped potatoes. Remember not to over whip the potatoes or they become sticky.
  5. Add salt pepper as per taste and finish with finely chopped chives.

 

Honey and Cinnamon glazed Carrots

Ingredients:

10 mini carrots, aka green top carrots

3 tbsp honey

⅛ tap cinnamon powder

2 tbsp olive oil

Salt

Pepper

Method:

  1. Clean and peel the carrots. Leave them whole if they are mini.
  2. Rub the carrots with oil, salt, pepper and cinnamon.
  3. Roast in the oven for 20 min at 350F.
  4. When they come out, drizzle honey and give them a quick toss. You may add more cinnamon at this stage if you like more.

 

Spiced Cauliflower

Ingredients:

3 cups cauliflower florets

1 tbsp spanish paprika

1 tsp garlic powder

½ tsp onion powder

½ tsp thyme

⅛ tsp cumin powder

4 tbsp oil

Salt

Pepper

Method:

  1. Mix all the dry spices together and store it in an airtight jar.
  2. Toss all the ingredients together in a bowl. (Approx 1 tbsp spice or less)
  3. Roast in the oven at 350F for 10 min. Then turn the pan and roast again for another 10 min.

 

Chicken gravy

Ingredients:

1kg chicken bones

1 onion

1 carrot

2 stalks of celery

5 cloves garlic

2 bay leaves

9 peppercorns

4 tbsp All-purpose flour (APF) or cornstarch

1 tbsp chopped herbs like chives, rosemary and thyme.

Salt

Pepper

Method:

  1. Roast the chicken bones at 400F for 40 min until they have a nice golden brown colour.
  2. Make a chicken stock by simmering the roasted chicken bones submerged in water with onion, carrots, celery, garlic and all the spices.
  3. Simmer for about 6 to 10 hours. Strain and your chicken stalk is ready.
  4. Use this stock to make a gravy. Make a slurry with APF (thick paste using water and flour). Bring the stock to a roasting boil. Now, slowly add the slurry in it. Cook out the starches by whisking it continuously.
  5. Add fresh chopped herbs like thyme, rosemary or sage for a better flavour.
  6. Salt and pepper to adjust the taste.

 

Mmmmmm, cannot wait for this amazing dinner that I planned with family, friends and kids. Absolutely simple and yet so different and delicious. Let us know if you have any questions about this or any other recipe. Take lots of pictures, and don’t forget to tag #metime #femmefiesta.

 

Toodles!

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About the author

Ankita Vaidya

Ankita Vaidya

A computer engineer on paper, chef by profession! Being born in a gastronomically enthu household was sheer luck and definitely some good karma. I left India at the age of 22 with 3 suitcases full of parents’ love, passion and determination to chase my dreams.

A connoisseur of Indian cuisine, I enjoy sharing my love for traditional Indian cooking wherever I go. Nurtured with extreme affection, this ‘lil princess’ is all set to touch millions of hearts with her holistic zeal for food and cooking.

I believe life is like a box of spices- though some moments may seem overwhelming, a thoughtful use and correct application will definitely give you extraordinary results. Feel free to share food related anything with me ‘cause I am a student for life!

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