The Sunday Roast - Anyday you please!

I think most will agree that a roast dinner is fairly high on their list of favourite dinners. Is it that one meal can guarantee such a great fusion of flavours or is it the feeling of nostalgia that this meal can conjure up? When I was growing up a roast dinner was obligatory on a Sunday, be it chicken, beef or lamb it was always served up with all the trimmings. I am still quite partial to a roast dinner but what hinders me from making this every other day is all the washing up it produces. There seem to be so many bowls, pots and pans needed for the roast and all the necessary accompanying dishes. 
This recipe that I am sharing with you is one that I have relied on in times when I have needed to feed a crowd but was really pushed for time. With this recipe, you can have a delicious roast dinner any day of the week with very little effort. To make the most of a whole chicken I get my butcher to chop it into 10 pieces, of course, if you are handy with butchery you could attempt to do this yourself but most butchers are most happy to oblige, which means less work for you in the kitchen. This not only cooks the chicken quicker but it results in a lot less waste with every possible piece of meat available for the eating. Feel free to experiment with what you add to the uncooked chicken. I am serving the potatoes and vegetables cooked separately but a few new potatoes, scrubbed well, would also cook perfectly in this dish. Likewise, root vegetables roughly chopped would cook to perfection in this dish.  I am always in search of "easy entertaining" recipes and this couldn't be simpler- just pop the tray in the oven a couple of hours before your guests arrive and it is ready for the table, served straight from the oven. The lemons and roasted garlic almost caramelise while cooking and the smokey flavour from the chorizo and paprika add a gratifying flavour to the cooked chicken, which leaves the chicken tasting equally as good served cold with salads. Do try out this way of cooking a roast chicken and believe me you will find it so convenient and tasty that this will be your new Roast Dinner. All you will need now is a plan of what to do with all the extra time you will have on a Sunday!

1 x 2-2.25kg Chicken cut into 10 pieces

100g chorizo cut into large chunks
1 head Garlic separated into unpeeled cloves
1 unwaxed Lemon cut into chunks

Sprig of rosemary
2 teaspoons smoked paprika
3 tablespoons Olive Oil
150 ml white wine
Black pepper

1. Pre-heat the oven to 180ºC / gas mark 4.
2. Put the chicken pieces into a roasting tin and add the chorizo, garlic cloves, lemon chunks and the rosemary; just pull the leaves off the stalks.
3. Sprinkle over the smoked paprika. Add the oil and using your hands mix everything together, then spread the mixture out, making sure all the chicken pieces are skin side up and the chorizo is nestled under the chicken pieces.
4. Pour over the white wine and grind on some pepper, then cover tightly with foil and put in the oven to cook for 1 1/2 hours.
5. Remove the foil from the roasting tin, and turn up the oven to 200ºC/gas mark 6.
Cook the uncovered chicken for another 30 minutes, by which time the skin on the meat will have turned golden brown.

6. Serve straight from the oven in the roasting tray.

This article was published in The Westmeath Independent on 11th May 2011.
Photos & styling by Nessa Robins.


Anna's kitchen table said...

It looks delicious! A one- pan Sunday dinner? Marvelous!

MissCakeBaker said...

I have friends coming over for lunch tomorrow and have been planning to make exactly this chicken dish!

Nessa Robins said...

That's wonderful! It really is a super dish for entertaining a crowd as it's ready straight from the oven.
Enjoy :)

Kristin said...

These kinds of one-tray dinners are real lifesavers. I make a Nigella Lawson recipe that's similar to this, with chorizo, but I like your version with the lemons and white wine even more. I've added this to my menu plan for this week!

Nessa Robins said...

Kristin I just love to cook a chicken this way. There is very Little waste and the chicken turns out so tasty! You're right a dish like this makes a very handy dinner!