Citrus & Thyme Soppin’ Good Roasted Spring Chicken

springchicken

Dear Readers, Lest you think that I, Food on Fifth, sit around my kitchen all day eating tartlets, upside down cakes, spoon breads and pound cakes I am branching out this week.  As it is Spring here in Nashville in the best and most perfect sense of the word I am sharing our dinner from a week or so ago, a juicy citrus & thyme roasted chicken. A fresh, bright flavor due to all the citrus, very crispy skin, lots of juice in the bottom of the pan served alongside a freshly baked baguette from flour.sugar.eggs. for soppin’ & a bowl of lightly dressed arugula….an easy Spring dinner…oh my, so good.

Here is what you will need:

a good quality, Plump Roasting Chicken (I got this beauty from my local                        CSA, “Fresh Harvest”. This is just the best as you can choose what you want each week, order & pay online and the variety of choices is just astounding…meats, vegs, flowers, cheeses, bread, eggs…all organically grown from farms in the Nashville, TN area.)

 Whole Fresh Citrus – mandarins, oranges, clementines, lemons, grapefruit, whatever you have + 1/2 cup Orange Juice & 1/4 cup Lemon Juice freshly squeezed

Fresh Thyme Leaves (I have a Lemon Thyme in my garden so I used that.)

A few whole, peeled roasted garlic cloves & shallots

Olive oil, salt & freshly ground pepper

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Here is what to do:

1. Wash chicken inside and out under cool running water. Pat dry. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drizzle some olive oil in the bottom of a roasting pan. Cut citrus into halves & chunks. Slice one lemon thinly.

2. Place the chicken in the roasting pan. Using your fingers (gloves if you prefer) gently loosen the skin over the breast of the chicken & insert a few lemon slices & thyme sprigs under the skin. Stuff the inside of the chicken with the shallots, a few sprigs of thyme & chunks of citrus. Tie the legs together using kitchen twine. Rub the outside of the skin with olive oil & sprinkle with salt & pepper & fresh thyme leaves.

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3. Place all the citrus pieces around the chicken along with the garlic cloves & thyme sprigs. Pour the orange juice & lemon juice into the pan. Roast for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until a meat thermometer inserted into the thicken part of the breast reads 165 degrees. I basted the chicken every so often with the pan juices.

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Serve pieces of chicken with some of the pan juices & roasted citrus, a crusty baguette for soppin’ and a simple arugula salad.

Oh My, Hello Spring!

“memorial day weekend dinner party”

How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!  ~Maya Angelou

The city on a holiday weekend is one of my favorite places…the traffic quietens, lots of folks have left town and a general hush falls over everything. We were invited to our good friends, John & Liz,  for a Sunday evening Memorial Day Weekend Lobster dinner party with a couple of other friends. Our hosts provided a great Cheese Platter, the Lobster, roasted asparagus, an unbelievable chocolate dessert & the wonderful ambience. We, the guests, brought a fresh garden salad, a bulghur & vegetable salad, hummus & pita, a fresh baguette, wine & Pimm’s No. 1.

We had lots of laughs and a memorable dinner.

Cheese & Wine for starters.

Jill's Hummus made from dried, cooked & blended chickpeas & tahini..the best.

Sandy's Pennywise Cab...

It's a Pimm's kind of summer!
Liz's fresh asparagus ready to be roasted!
Beautiful simple elegant centerpiece.
Warm fresh baguette....time to dine.
Homegrown & organic, Red & Green Romaine, Red & Green Oak Leaf Lettuces, Spinach, Buffalo Mozzarella & Heirloom Cherry Tomato Salad.
8 minute Lobster Tails...perfect!
Asparagus roasted with Parmesan...
Bulghur with Vegetables...another hit from Jill!
Dinner parties are naturally romantic and cozy.....
...and there was drawn butter...
...eating with our hands....
Liz made the dark chocolate crunchy crust with sea salt for this dreamy tart. Local dairy full fat whipping cream by John on top!

“Life is short…have dinner parties.”