Spanish Pot Roast Chicken

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Washing up dodgers this is a dish for you.

A sweet and tender roast chicken, with chorizo rice and sauce all made in one pot.

Not only is it a dinner party failsafe, it is also a fab recipe to whip up the beginning of the week. In one swoop you have leftovers and lunch boxes throughout. Warming, nourishing, hearty food that warms the cockles and fuels the mind. Cheaper and tastier than any supermarket salad or stew pot, thats for sure.

What I love so much about this dish is that no goodness is lost. Cooking the rice in the bottom of the dish soaks up the flavour of the stock, chorizo oil and fragrant spices, so the delicious taste of the chicken isn’t muted by bland tasting rice.

To ensure the meal is balanced, the only thing needed is a big plate of steamed greens. This time of year tenderstem broccoli is a favourite at my dinner table. With this too you can steam up a whole packet, and save some for leftovers.

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Moroccan Pot Roast Chicken Recipe

Serves 4, generously

  • One whole chicken, 1.5 kg approx
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons sweet paprika
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon chilli flakes
  • teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 onions, roughly chopped
  • 150g chorizo, chopped
  • 1 ltr chicken stock
  • 200g basmati rice

Chilli and Mint Chutney

  • small bunch of fresh coriander, finely chopped
  • small bunch of fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1 long green chilli, deseeded and chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, grated
  • 1 lemon, juice only
  • 200g plain greek yoghurt

Method

Heat the oven to 160°C (gas mark 2-3). Heat the half the olive oil in a large, heatproof casserole dish over a medium heat. Add the chopped onions to the pan and cook over a medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5-10 minutes, or until the onions have softened. Add the chorizo and increase the heat to high, to caramelise the onion and cook the chorizo.

In a small bowl, mix the paprika, cumin, pepper flakes, cinnamon and 3/4 teaspoon sea salt. Finely grate the zest from the lemon and mix the zest into the spices for the chicken. Gradually mix in 2 tablespoons of the olive oil to make a paste. Pull out and discard the fat and giblets from the cavity of the chicken. Spread a little of the paste inside the cavity, slather some of it under the skin over the chicken breasts, and rub the rest of the paste all over the outside of the chicken.

Add the chicken to the casserole (breast-side up) and season it with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper and half the chicken stock. Then cover the casserole dish with a lid, or tightly with foil or a lid, then place in the oven and roast for 40 minutes, basting occasionally with the pan juices.

Increase the heat to 190°C (gas mark 4) and remove the lid 20-30 minutes before the end of the cooking time, to allow the chicken to brown on top. Once cooked, remove the chicken from the dish and set aside to rest. Add the remaining stock, 1 teaspoon salt and the rice to the pan and place on the stove. Cook for 15 minutes, or until the rice is done.

Whilst the rice is cooking, make the chutney by placing all the ingredients, into a bowl and mix well. Season to taste.

When the chicken is cool enough to handle, carve the breast, remove the legs and separate the thighs from the drumsticks. Serve up the chicken with the rice, stock, the chutney and any greens of your choice.

Leftovers will last 2-3 days in sealed tupperware in the fridge.

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