Spoil your mother rotten with a whole roast chicken and all the trimmings! This Italian-inspired dish couldn’t be easier, but the result is really special. Cooking both the potatoes and chicken with the same whole lemon creates the most amazing flavour.
Makes 6 servings
- 2 kg whole chicken, cavity cleaned
- 1.5 kg white potatoes, peeled
- 1 large lemon + 1 small lemon for garnish
- 1 whole bulb garlic, broken into cloves
- 1 handful fresh thyme
- 1 handful fresh rosemary sprigs, leaves picked
- 8 rashers smoked streaky bacon, optional
- Freshly ground black pepper
- Sea salt
- Olive oil
Rub the chicken inside and out with a generous amount of salt and freshly ground black pepper. Refrigerate Preheat oven to 190oC. Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Cut the potatoes into golf-ball-sized pieces, place into the water with the whole lemon and the garlic cloves, and cook for 12 minutes. Drain and for 4 hours. allow to steam dry for 1 minute, then remove the lemon and garlic.
While the lemon is still hot, carefully stab it about 10 times. Take the chicken out of the fridge, pat it with kitchen paper and rub it all over with olive oil. Push the garlic cloves, the whole lemon and the thyme into the cavity, then put the it into a roasting tray and cook in the preheated oven for around 45 minutes.
Remove the chicken to a plate. Add the potatoes and rosemary leaves to the roasting tray. Shake the tray around, then make a gap in the centre of the potatoes and put the chicken back in. If using the bacon, lay the rashers over the chicken breast and cook for a further 45 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked and the potatoes are golden brown.
Remove the lemon and garlic from inside the chicken, squeeze all the garlic flesh out of the skin, crush it and smear all over the chicken. Discard the lemon and rosemary. If using, remove bacon from the chicken and crumble it over the potatoes. Garnish with freshly sliced lemon and carve chicken at the table.