Sunday Roast Chicken

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Servings: 4
READY IN
1hr 50mins
Ingredients
  • 3 -5 sprigs parsley
  • 3 -5 sprigs thyme
  • 1 (3 1/2-4 lb) broiler-fryer chickens, with giblets reserved for stock (recipe follows)
  • 1⁄2 lemon, sliced (optional)
  • 1⁄2 onion, sliced (optional)
  • 4 tablespoons butter, softened (or margarine)
  • Apple and Herb Stuffing
  • 2 tablespoons butter (or margarine)
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cooking apple, peeled, cored, and grated
  • 1 cup fresh white breadcrumbs (or whole wheat, rye, etc.)
  • 1 small egg, beaten
  • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1 grated lemon, zest of
  • salt and black pepper
  • Gravy
  • 2 teaspoons flour
  • 1 1⁄4 cups giblet chicken stock or 1 1⁄4 cups vegetable stock
Directions
  • Make the apple and herb stuffing: Melt the butter in a saucepan, add the onion, and cook gently for a few minutes, until softened.
  • Remove from the heat, leave to cool slightly, then stir in the apple, bread crumbs, egg,parsley, thyme, lemon zest, and salt and pepper to taste.
  • Leave to cool completely.
  • Put the parsley and thyme sprigs into the cavity of the chicken, add the lemon and onion, if using, and season with black pepper.
  • Truss the chicken if desired.
  • Spoon the stuffing into the neck end of the chicken, secure the skin flap over the stuffing with a smalll skewer, and pat into a rounded shape.
  • Put any leftover stuffing into a small ovenproof dish.
  • Rub the softened butter over the chicken breast and season with salt and pepper.
  • Place the chicken, breast side down, in a roasting pan.
  • Cook in a 375* oven for about 1 1/2-2 hours.
  • Turn the chicken over when lightly browned.
  • Continue cooking, basting every 20 minutes.
  • Cook any leftover stuffing with the chicken for the last 40 minutes of cooking time.
  • Test the chicken: insert a skewer into the thigh-the juices will run clear when the chicken is cooked.
  • Transfer to a warmed serving platter and keep warm while you make the gravy.
  • Remove the stuffing from the neck cavity and transfer to a serving dish with any leftover stuffing.
  • Carve the chicken and serve with the gravy.
  • Gravy: Tilt the roasting pan, and spoon off all but 1 tbls.
  • of the fat that rises to the surface, leaving behind the cooking juices.
  • Put the roasting pan on top of the stove.
  • Add the flour and cook over medium heat for 1-2 minutes, stirring constantly with a whisk or metal spoon to dissolve any browned bits on the bottom of the pan.
  • Pour in the stock and bring to a boil, stirring constantly until the gravy thickens.
  • Simmer for 2 minutes, then taste for seasoning.
  • Strain into a warmed gravy boat and serve immediately.
  • Giblet Stock: In a stockpot or large saucepan, cook the giblets until lightly browned.
  • Stir in 1 quart water.
  • Bring to a boil, skimming off any scum that forms on the surface.
  • Add 1-2 quartered unpeeled onions, 1 chopped carrot, 1 chopped celery stalk, 1 bouquet garni, and a few black peppercorns.
  • Simmer for about 1 hour.
  • Cool, cover, and keep in the fridge for 3 days or freeze for 3 months.
  • Strain before use.