Friday, August 19, 2011

Mmm, summer.

Eric got a chicken from the Amish folks at the farmer's market yesterday. So today I made roast chicken. It wasn't my first time roasting a chicken, but it may as well have been because I had no idea how to do it. I googled, of course, and turned to two of my culinary heroes: Ina Garten and Alice Waters. I mostly looked at this recipe from Ina on the Food Network website but I also peeked at this description of what to do from Alice reprinted on the Ladies' Home Journal website. Oh yeah, and I found out how to brine a chicken from the trusty folks at Cooks' Illustrated - on here (opens a pdf, I think).
I never really follow any recipes that I find on the internet - I just look at what they're generally doing and then make it up from there.
I started by brining the chicken like Cooks' Illustrated recommends and leaving it in the brine for about 7hrs. That was mostly just coincidence - I happened to get back to working on the chicken 7 hours later after a marathon day of closet-cleaning and laundry-doing. I should show you my closet! So clean! I even convinced Eric to give a ton of stuff to Goodwill.
Anyway, I patted the chicken dry and filled the cavity with: salt & pepper, 2 Persian limes (it's what we had on hand), most of a head of garlic (with the cloves pierced) and a ton of dried rosemary. Then I brushed the outside with melted butter and sprinkled with with more salt & pepper. I roasted it in a square Pyrex dish, into which I added 4 small potatoes from our garden, more rosemary, two small onions from our garden and a liberal splash of extra virgin olive oil. Into the oven at 425F for about an hour.
Aren't the little onions cute? The potatoes didn't make it into the picture because they were so delicious that I ate them immediately! So delicious that I decided to roast a bunch more of our garden potatoes right in the chicken fat/olive oil.
Not even all of these made it into the picture. Seriously. So delicious.
Eric made us a peach salsa too: two peaches from our peach picking expedition at the Shafer's the other day, a cucumber and a Scotch Bonnet pepper from Rudy Shafer's garden, one little garden onion and some lime juice. So fresh and good. He wanted to add some mint too, but we didn't grow any this year!
And finally, we sliced up an amazing Old German tomato that Eric had gotten at the farmer's market. A tomato that cost $2.50! I was kind of shocked at the price, but we're saving the seeds to grow some next year so it was totally worth it. And it was a tasty tomato.
Tomato porn.
More tomato porn!
I love the crazy tie-dye look it has once it's sliced up!
And so we had ourselves a summery dinner. The chicken turned out great. Really tender and flavorful - I think I got the brine timing and the roast timing just right.

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