Jul. 2, 2016

Rosemary Roast Chicken

Welcome back!

If you are spending this weekend in Ghana, Happy Republic weekend to you!  If you are celebrating Eid in Ghana, in the UAE and other parts of the world, "Eid Mubarak" in advance! If you are reading from the US, Happy 4th of July!  I hope you all have a good and successful year!

This weekend, there is likely to be several events to mark the Bank Holiday weekend here in Ghana.  If you are thinking of entertaining  - family and friends to spend the Bank Holiday with you,  just lazing around with the family or thinking towards Ramadan during mid-week  – how about putting smiles on everyone’s face by making a roast chicken lunch or dinner?   Why? Because it will make a big change for all the chicken lovers in your home.

My Observation:

One observation I have made is that fried chicken is served at almost every event here in Ghana but never roast chicken. Why is that?  Could the reason be oven space?  I think it’s just as easy to roast the chicken if your event is relatively small.  Better still, you can do both so that you satisfy those who have to have their fried chicken. 

Arguments for Roast Chicken:

The convenience with roast chicken is that;

  1. It is easier to cook especially when you are putting on an event.  It frees you to do other things once the chicken is in the oven, whereas if you are sitting for hours frying all that chicken, you lose hours.  Its weekend and you want to spend some time resting and being with the family so how about cooking smart so you can have some time to yourself or time with the family?
  2. The other argument for roast chicken is that it can be sliced and served with any dishes without creating a whole lot of messy bones lying all over the place afterwards.  If it is the quantity that fried chicken creates that you are worried about, my answer to that is, sometimes, less is more and that is also true with food!
  3. Lastly, health-wise, it’s believed that baked foods are relatively better for the body than fried foods. Whiles we can’t stop eating fried foods, everything is about balance, so make a smart choice!

If you have been convinced to roast your chicken for your event this weekend instead of frying it, this is what you have to do:

Difficulty and servings

Easy, serves 4- 6

Preparation and Cooking times

   Preparation time: 10 minutes, @1hr :20 minutes - 1hr 30 minutes depending on size of the bird

You will need:

1 whole Chicken, thawed, washed and dried

3 tbs Butter or Margarine, softened

2 tbs dried Rosemary or about 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary, chopped

1 tbs powdered Black Pepper

1 tbs powdered White Pepper

Salt to taste

1 large Onion, peeled and cut into 4

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees  Celsius, (Gas Mark 4)
  2. Combine the rosemary, black and white peppers and salt together with the butter in a small bowl.
  3. Place the chicken on a heavy duty aluminum foil on a baking tray, with the breast side up and carefully rub the butter mixture all over the chicken.  Make sure to rub and deposit more mixture under the breast skin, and inside the cavity as well.  Put the onion pieces inside the cavity and loosely fold up the foil so that it is sealed.
  4. Place the sealed foil in the middle of the oven and roast for about an hour and 20 minutes or until the chicken is sizzling and an inserted skewer shows the juices to be clear.  When ready, pour any juice inside the foil into a bowl to be added to your gravy or stew.  Fold the foil down around the chicken and let it roast unsealed until the skin is crispy and golden brown. 
  5. Remove the chicken from the oven and rest it for about 10 minutes and carve for your event.

Monica’s Tip:

This recipe is easy to make and delicious with any stew or gravy that you might make to accompany the roast.  The rosemary chicken will be a huge success as it smells moreish and works very well with other accompaniments like chips and rice and other foods.  Please make sure that any juice from the chicken in the foil is emptied into a bowl and added to your gravy or stew later.  It’s not for throwing away as I have seen it done before.  When serving the roast chicken, slice onto a large plate so people can serve themselves.  Enjoy! 

I would like to know how you get on when you roast your chicken.  Please drop me a line with your pictures, if possible, through www.africaonyourplate.simplesite.com

Happy entertaining!


Monica Serwah Busia