You know that tasty seasoning that store-bought barbecue rotisserie chickens are smothered in? The really more-ish stuff that makes you want to eat all the skin? Well, I love it. And so does my 4-year-old daughter. But I suspect that there are probably some ingredients lurking in there that I’d rather we didn’t eat. And, like most things, making your own at home is so much cheaper. So, I set about coming up with a seasoning for my roast chicken that was just as tasty. And I think I’ve found it…I mean, look at that picture above. Doesn’t it make you drool?
Roasting a chicken and some vegetables is one of the easiest ways (trust me – it really is easy!) to provide your family with a nourishing, wholefoods meal that you can stretch out to make your budget go further. And if you do what I do – roast two at a time – you’ll have loads of leftovers that you can re-purpose into other meals for lunches and dinners during the week – and even have some leftover for the freezer.
Now, onto that seasoning…
It really is simple, and uses just a few ingredients – no 11 secret herbs and spices here!
2 tsp Herbamare (a seasoned herb & vegetable salt you can find in the health food section of the supermarket)
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp onion powder
1 lemon, zest finely grated
- Preheat your oven to about 180 degrees Celsius.
- Mix all the ingredients except the olive oil in a small bowl – adjust quantities to taste. FAST TIP: You can also mix up the spices (omitting the lemon zest) in larger quantities in a jar to make it quicker to prepare later – just add fresh lemon zest when you’re ready to use it.
- Drizzle some olive oil over the chicken and rub in. Then sprinkle with the seasoning mix and rub all over. Place the lemon inside the cavity.
- Into the oven! Allow approx 30 minutes per 500g of chicken – ie 1 hour per kg. I like to roast my chicken on a rack above a baking tray. Pour a little bit of water in the baking tray to help keep the chicken moist. After about half an hour of cooking, add the vegetables – potato, sweet potato, pumpkin, carrots, onion, all tossed in a little olive oil – underneath (the water will have evaporated by then, and your veggies will be basted in lovely chicken juices).
5. Check that your chicken is cooked through by piercing it near the thigh and checking that the juices run clear (not pink!). Then take your chicken out, cover in foil and rest for 20 minutes before carving.
6.You may need to take your veggies out of the pan juices and spread them on a tray and return them to the oven at 200-220 degrees to crisp them up.
Traditional Roast Dinner
Make some gravy by draining and reserving all but a couple of tablespoons of the pan juices, adding some flour to the remaining juices and cooking to a paste on your stove top, then slowly adding back the reserved juices (along with broth or water if necessary) until you get your desired consistency – salt to taste. Serve with your roasted veggies and some steamed green veg for a classic roast dinner.
Now what to do with the leftover chicken??
Add it to other meals:
Or add shredded chicken to a pasta dish. Here are a couple of family-pleasers from Lisa Corduff at Small Steps Living:
Don’t forget to make a broth with the leftover bones and a few veggies and use it for nourishing soups:
And that’s just the beginning! What are your favourite ways to use leftover chicken?