If you ask me, there’s nothing better than to spend the Saturday night at the kitchen table. Late afternoon we start with a glass of wine, some olives and a slice of ham, then slowly into the kitchen: love it!
On these kinds of evenings we often cook easy-to-prepare dishes or things that ask little time behind the stove. Steak with fries for example, we prepare the fries and mayonnaise during the day and a steak obviously doesn’t take that much time to cook. Another favourite is a whole chicken. It started with a Jamie Oliver recipe: spring chicken with pancetta in a delicious, rich tomato sauce. You should know that I am not a fan of meat on a bone; luckily the rabbit with fries from my mother in law has changed that. Although you will still not see me eating spareribs or chicken legs ;-).
So, Jamie’s spring chicken: really a super-tasty dish where the tender meat fell off the bone! The leftover meat I used in a salad the following day. The next step was a whole chicken: also a success! Not difficult to make and while the chicken is in the oven, we drink another glass of wine ;-).
I prefer it the French way: simply stuffed with lemon and fresh herbs. Mr G. recently suggested an Asian version; I was not immediately excited until I realized that I could use the leftovers for dim sum; then I could finally use my bamboo steamer!
Actually roasting the perfect chicken only knows 3 steps: seasoning, roasting and rest. I’m also going to give you some top tips so don’t be scared when you see the long list of instructions ;-). And of course I’ll make it easy for you: I also shared the recipe for the leftover steamed dim sum buns; have a tasty weekend!
Whole Asian style chicken from the oven
- 1 good quality chicken, at least 1 kg
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 4 cm ginger, grated
- 1 tbsp. honey
- 2 tbsp. soy sauce
- 150 ml hoisin sauce
- 1 tsp. brown sugar
- 1 red pepper, finely sliced
- 2 spring onions, finely chopped
- 5 drops of sesame oil
- Mix all the ingredients except the chicken in a bowl and stir well
- TIP: Wash the chicken inside and out with cold water and pat dry with paper towels
- TIP: It is best to lay the chicken on a rack in a greased roasting pan; this way the heat can circulate well and the chicken will be crispier because it’s not in its own fat. If you don’t have a roasting pan, you can also place the chicken in a simple oven dish on thick slices of onion to mimic the effect
- Brush the chicken well with the marinade. You will not immediately use the whole amount of marinade, so cover the rest and keep in the fridge
- Cover the pan with chicken with plastic wrap and let marinate for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator. Marinate a few more times during these hours
- Preheat the oven to 190 degrees
- TIP: Leave the chicken to room temperature, brush again with the marinade and divide a few knobs of butter on top of the chicken for some extra juice and crisp
- TIP: Cooking time depends on the weight of the chicken: as a guideline take 45 minutes per kilo. Don’t forget to regularly baste the chicken with the fat from the roasting pan or with some extra marinade to prevent drying
- TIP: After the baking time is up test whether the chicken is cooked well: stick a skewer into the thickest part between the leg and breast. The juice that comes out should be clear. If not, leave the chicken in the oven a little longer
- When the chicken is cooked wrap in aluminium foil and rest for 10-15 minutes
- And then you need to cut a whole chicken … Once you’ve done it you will see it’s not that hard. Check out this Jamie Oliver cooking skills video
- Cut the chicken at the table or serve the different parts on a nice plate
Serve with rice or Asian pancakes and braised carrots with coriander and ginger. Don’t forget to pull the leftover meat from the bones after dinner for tomorrow’s steamed dim sum buns or any other dish; store in the refrigerator. The bones you could use to make your own chicken stock!