Thyme Roasted Hen with Plums, Citrus and New Potatoes

Celebrate Small might be a good motto for Holidays 2020.  A plump roasting hen pulled from the freezer, or bought fresh, along with a handful of fresh herbs is a good starting place.  I added cut up oranges, plums and potatoes in their skins to the pan.

Don’t be so hard on yourself this season. Take a deep breath. A one-pan dinner popped into the oven until it’s ready helps make life a little bit easier. Some days I feel I’m doing good to complete this sort of small task, but eat we must even as the world is whirling out-of-control around us.  Take a quick walk around your neighborhood while your bird is roasting.  Being active makes most things better. A cozy dinner helps as well. 

Serve roasted potatoes and fruit in a bowl with lots of the pan juices. You might think leaving the rind on the citrus is a no no, or combining them with new potatoes along with plums and lots of fresh thyme might be odd, but when they roast together with the hen in the pan juices they are simply delicious. 

I’ve always preferred a roasting hen to a turkey. They don’t take so long to cook, they stay juicier. I roast hens throughout the year always keeping one in my freezer. I buy local hens, grain fed and usually about 4 to 5 lbs for celebrations. Smaller sizes for everyday. 

Thank you for voting for Biden-Harris. Celebrate Small. Take care, wear your masks and be well.

Thyme Roasted Hen with Plums, Citrus and New Potatoes


  • One 4-5 lb roasting hen, rinsed & patted dry
  • 3 lbs new potatoes, cut in half or quarters
  • 6 plums, seeded and cut into quarters
  • 2 oranges, rind left on, cut into thick slices
  • a large handful of fresh thyme, divided
  • Olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup of chicken broth


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Place roasting hen on a flat work surface and pat skin dry a second time. Rub skin all over with olive oil. Generously rub in 2 tablespoons of the fresh thyme leaves. Place hen in a large heavy pan. I used a 12 inch cast iron, but any large pan with do. Season bird with salt and black pepper. 
  3. Roast the bird for about 40 minutes then add the new potatoes, plums and oranges to the pan. Pour in chicken broth. Continue to roast until the a meat thermometer inserted into the fattest part of the bird reads 160 degrees, another 30-40 minutes. You want the skin to be crisp and dark golden brown. Serve roasted hen cut into pieces with potatoes & fruit on the side. A chilled wine and a baguette for sopping up the juices on your plate is all you need.

Teresa Blackburn Food Styling

3 thoughts on “Thyme Roasted Hen with Plums, Citrus and New Potatoes

Leave a Reply