Tuesday’s Table – Roast Chicken

My mom is known for her roast chicken. She takes them to people when they are sick, busy, sad, etc. This is her thing. I have always loved being on the receiving end of this gift but have never roasted a chicken of my own. For years I was intimidated by roasting a whole chicken. Years, like until this one, and we’re coming up on the end of 2015. BUT I have now conquered this chicken twice and am here to preach about it. Im pretty sure it will be a go-to of mine for the rest of my life, at least once a month.

Healthy, simple, homemade, guaranteed leftovers that can be repurposed a zillion different ways. Yep. This is a winner and I’m no longer a chicken — get it?…

Roast Chicken

4-6 pound whole organic chicken (the smaller the better)

2 onions, cut into eighths

1-2 lemons, several thin, round slices then just cut pieces

6-10 cloves of garlic, peeled

Rosemary sprigs

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

This will require a good bit of handling raw chicken so be prepared by having Clorox wipes and soap on hand. But this is not half as bad or as scary as I thought it would be! You can do it.

Rinse and pat dry small, whole chicken.

Chop onions and lemons

Peel whole cloves of garlic and cut rosemary sprigs

Arrange 4 slices of lemon and 2-3 sprigs of rosemary under skin of chicken (you will need to sort of separate the skin from the chicken to slide lemons in – sounds peculiar but isn’t bad).

Fill cavity of your chicken with several pieces of lemon, onion, and rosemary. As well as season it heavily with salt and pepper.

Rub the outside of the chicken with olive oil, then season with sea salt and pepper.

Place the chicken on top of a bed of onions, and garlic. **Be sure your garlic is underneath the chicken so it roasts but does not burn.**

Preheat oven to 400, once you put chicken it reduce heat to 350. Roast your chicken at 20 minutes per pound,basting every twenty minutes.  This sounds cumbersome but just set the timer on your oven or phone and it’s easy as pie. If you chicken starts to get too brown towards the end, cover with aluminum foil. If you have a quick-read meat thermometer use this for double checking your chicken so it is not over or under done–it should be around 165F.

After removing from the oven let rest 10 minutes before carving.

Raw chicken, ick. After washing and patting dry, I stand the chicken up on top of paper towels so it can continue to dry while I chop onions, lemon and prepare garlic.

As you can see there is no reason to be shy with your seasoning. 
Basting. Use either a baster, silicon brush or a big spoon.




Pistachio Cranberry Goat Cheese and Our Holiday Playlist!

This seems to be the week that kicks off the fun and jam-packed Christmas time!  We’ve got holiday events Wednesday through Saturday evenings. I’m tired already, but so excited. In this post you will find an easy appetizer that you can whip up quickly for any holiday get together as well as our Christmas playlist! 

To get fully into the Christmas spirit turn on our Holiday Favorites Playlist. It’s all of our favorite Christmas classics like Nat King Cole and Billie Holiday mixed in with a few newbies for good measure (NSYNC’s “Merry Christmas” anyone?!).

Press play. Then whip up this incredibly easy appetizer that’s a crowd pleaser as well the perfect color combination for Christmas.

Cheese Log with Cranberries and Pistachios

1 small goat cheese log 

1/2 brick of cream cheese

Freshly ground black pepper

Pinch of sea salt

1/2 c. Pistachios, chopped

1/2 c. Fresh Cranberries OR Craisins, chopped

– IF using fresh cranberries then roast them in oven for 15-20 minutes with 1/2c. of sugar

Let cheeses soften a bit then combine the two, adding black pepper and a touch of salt. Using wax paper shape them cheese mixture into a log. 

(If making the day ahead of time keep the mixture in the waxed paper and also wrap it with Saran Wrap then leave in fridge.) The day you plan to serve this app, add chopped cranberries and pistachios to the outside of the cheese. 

The easiest way I have found to do this (requiring the least amount of cleanup) is to keep everyone on the waxed paper and use the paper to roll/work the cranberries and pistachios onto the cheese. The colors really couldn’t be better for any Christmas party or just small get together with friends.


Curry Chicken Salad

You cannot go wrong with this chicken salad. It is the perfect go-to weekday lunch, weekend at the lake/beach sustenance or appetizer.
This Curry Chicken Salad is one those recipes that Julia, my mom, and I have been making for years. Tried and true. 
Our recipe can be made Dairy Free if you remove Greek yogurt and add more mayonnaise. It can also be Gluten Free depending on the chicken you use. While it’s very easy to use a rotisserie (most of these cannot be trusted to be completely gluten free unless it specifically says so), you can also use leftover roasted or grilled chicken or you could bake some of your own.

Curry Chicken Salad

1 Rotisserie Chicken, Shredded
2 Tbs Mayonnaise
2 Tbs F Free Plain Greek Yogurt
4 Chopped Green Onions
1/3 c. Chopped Cilantro
Juice of 1/2 Lemon
1/3 c. Chopped Golden Raisins
1/3 c. Shredded, Toasted Coconut
1 Tbs. Curry Powder
1/4 tsp. Salt
1/8 tsp. Cayenne Pepper
Black Pepper
2 Tbs Mango Chutney (optional)
Combine. Refrigerate for two hours before serving.
Excellent served over greens, on pita or tortilla chips, on top of baby romaine leaves, or with crackers, etc. Yum.

Brown Sugar Fruit Dip

Both of us grew up with this fruit dip, our mom used to make it often and it’s always been a crowd pleaser. Not to mention it takes only three ingredients and less minutes to whip up. Excellent with strawberries (pictured) and cantaloupe but could be used to encourage anyone (I’m including myself here) to enjoy all of the spring and summer fruit!

Brown Sugar Fruit Dip

16 oz. Light Sour Cream**

3 Tbs. Dark Brown Sugar

1 tsp. Vanilla

Stir, serve. Really, that’s all. It’s almost embarrassing.

**To cut calories you can use 1 small container of light sour cream with one small container of fat free Greek yogurt, but I do not recommend all yogurt — but really it’s already light sour cream