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Roasted chicken and roasted root vegetables?

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Tonight I'm making a roasted chicken. Going to the market now, I'm going to buy root vegetables: turnips, carrots, beets.

I'm thinking of putting everything in the oven for roasting together, the veggies in the juices of the chicken... does that sound like it's going to work?

Should I first pre-cook the beets - do they need a longer cooking time?

I'm thinking of dicing everything in medium size cubes.

My chicken is 4.6 lbs.

Any ideas, suggestions, tips? Thanks!
post #2 of 13
sounds like you have all your seasonings in mind, that said, it sounds like a plan.
Reason to cook beets in a separate dish is so they do not bleed on the others.
For dishes like this and roast vegetable salads, I just peel and cube the beets, toss with a bit of the seasoning and olive oil and roast about 40 minutes.
Then after you remove chicken from roasting pan, you can spoon off some of the juices if you wish to make a sauce.
then very carefully fold beets in with other veggies. So good and pretty, worth the extra step.
Yum, Sunday Chicken,
post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the tip on cooking the beets separately! Wouldn't have thought about it. So turnips and carrots in the chicken pan, beets separately. How long do you think for turnips? For carrots? Should I add them to the chicken pan about 40mn before the end?

Seasoning? Salt and pepper obviously, I have rosemary and thyme, I may use just a little.

I was also going to add full unpeeled garlic cloves for roasted garlic.

Serve with loaf a bread and extra-strong Dijon mustard !!

I'm not going to make a sauce, but maybe I'll pour the juices in a pan and reduce while the chicken is resting.
post #4 of 13
One of my favorite dishes is roast chicken with roast potatoes - carrots and turnips are nice additions, as are beets (never thought of that)
My hints are these
mash a garlic clove, chop some thyme or marjoram (rosemary is too strong, domineering, i think) and smash some pink peppercorns if you have them (otherwise black pepper, but the pink is special) and smear it together with some cold butter. Stuff under the skin with some of this. It leaves the chicken incredibly juicy and tasty.

I prefer the potatoes etc cut into wedges not chopped into cubes, like large french fries, three-sided. (nice long crisp corners to eat)
Then i always roast it all on parchment paper on a very large LOW-SIDED baking sheet - low sided not to produce steam around the potatoes, or they don;t brown. large so they all get contact with the base.
Then i roast it all in the oven to the MAXIMUM heat (like 450) and on the lowest shelf. Yes, trust me. If the chicken skin starts to get too cooked you can put a TENT of foil on it to reflect the heat but not steam it. Turn the root vegetables during cooking, and watch that they don;t burn. They should come out nice and crusty, and nut brown but not blackened, take them out before that.
Take the vegetables immediately out ofn the pan when cooked or they re-absorb all the fat.
I don;t have times for this, i do it all by eye. The high heat and the low rack are the two important factors.
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
"Siduri said, 'Gilgamesh, where are you roaming? You will never find the eternal life that you seek...Savour your food, make each of your days a delight, ... let music and dancing fill your house, love the child who holds you by the hand and give your wife pleasure in your embrace.'"
post #5 of 13
that's lunch today.....
I've got a 4.5# chicken in, olive oil, kosher salt, and a 1/2 handful of rosemary.

Separate pan, wedged fennel, real local baby carrots and tiny leeks cut in half...evo and salt. I'm paying attention as the leeks and carrots will probably cook faster than the fennel bulb.

typically a chicken will cook faster than diced veg. So add them when the chicken has 30 minutes left in the oven.

.....Salad of leaf greens, arugula has beets, grapefruit, pecans....vinagrette.

yum. roots, chicken and greens.
Sweet dough rolls for dessert....not sure what filling yet, either orange cherry or apple/raisin/cinnamon or ...????
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
post #6 of 13
I've been making a chicken dish and its variations for long time- browning cut-up chicken on the stovetop and then finishing it in the oven with the chicken perched over whole baby veggies. I usually use the breasts so the veggies won't become grease-logged.
What a relief! To find out after all these years that I'm not crazy. I'm just culinarily divergent...
What a relief! To find out after all these years that I'm not crazy. I'm just culinarily divergent...
post #7 of 13
Some tips for roasting chicken:

Always, as in always, truss the chicken before roasting. At a minimum tie the legs together and fold the wings back. The "right" way to truss a bird is to tie the legs together, then tie the thighs and wings close to the body. I use three pieces of string, some people use two. Whatever.

Roast the chicken on some sort of rack. You can use a natural rack made out of vegetables if you like, but the chicken should not contact the pan and air should be able to circulate all around it. If you do decide to set the chicken on celery ribs or the like, remeber the chicken must be rotated during cooking.

Rotate the chicken at least three times during cooking -- so all four sides cook "up" part of the time. The breast should cook up last, and for the least amount of time. Time is roughly 10 min/lb at 425 and 12 min/lb at 400.

Calculate your cooking time in advance and make the first couple of turns according to calculation, but DO NOT TRUST THE CLOCK to tell you when your food is properly cooked. It's done when it's done, not when some gong goes off. Use an instant read thermometer (155 at the breast, 160+ at the thigh) or the leg wiggle test.

Allow a chicken at least 10 minutes to rest before carving. Chicken tastes much better warm than hot -- so consider the slight warm-down a doubly useful part of the process.

As to which vegetables in the same pan as the chicken: Anything you'd fry in chicken fat and/or put in chicken soup; nothing you wouldn't. Anything else cook in a separate pan in the oven or on top of the stove. Either cut the vegetables to size so they'll finish cooking with the chicken or add them later. Consider allowing a little coarsely diced carrot and celery to overcook (near blackness) so they may be pressed in when sieving the jus.

Turnips are nice, but rutabaga and parsnips kick. A little piece of rutabaga adds color and body to the jus.

Carve the chicken by jointing it (taking off the leg/thighs and separating them -- and maybe taking off the wings too) before carving it (remove the breasts from the carcass whole, lay them on your board, and slice). The "classic" way to carve a chicken is to remove the breast with the wing attached. It takes some practice, and does very little for service -- it's only presentation. Back in the day, when a chicken was only one act in a multi-course food-a-ganza, it made sense to include a small piece of breast with a wing to make an entire portion. Modernly, when only one protein is served it does not make sense. I suggest jointing the wings (removing them from the carcass) before taking the breasts.

The "best" knife for carving a chicken is a 5" to 8" "petty" or "trenchelard" slicer shaped knife. Not a boning knife and not a chef's knife. That said, any sharp knife is better than any sharp knife -- and don't make yourself nuts over knives. I've got you covered on that. Use whatever is most comfortable for you.

Reserve the carcass for chicken stock. One old carcass, plus one whole chicken (even a fryer size), plus left over scraps from boning out thighs and breasts will make quite a bit of "roast chicken" stock. When you're making the stock, remove the whole chicken when it's just perfectly poached, take all the meat and return the bones (that's thrifty and delicious), then and only then add the aromatics (vegetables) and finish making the stock. Roast stock (aka brun) is the best -- so save that carcass.

Peeled cloves of garlic will not survive 40 minutes plus at high heat uncovered. Burnt garlic is wretched. High heat isn't great for roasting garlic anyway, but you can try giving a whole head about twenty minutes. If you want to toss in a single clove near the end -- 10 minutes is good -- so about the time you turn the bird breast side up.

Have you ever cooked a chicken in a romertopf? Love it generally and by far the best "40 cloves of garlic" chicken ever.

post #8 of 13
Somebody get me a chicken!!!.......I am salivating over this thread! :lips::lips::lips:
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Guys, thanks for all the feedback! This place is amazing. BDL, thank you so much for your expertise, always highly appreciated - priceless!

So: the chicken was a huge success, the veggies weren't.

For the first time, I trussed my chicken. I did not have a needle, so I simply took one 2' piece of butcher string, tied the butt with the two legs, went in between the legs and the breasts, turned the chicken breast down to tie the wings together in the back.

My instant thermometer doesn't work, it never did, I never trusted it. I need a new one, and I need to learn to trust it - or I need to trust myself to work without one. This time, I put my chicken in a 450 oven, and after 70mn I could tell it was done by slicing in between one of the leg and the breast.

I did give it 10-15mn rest under loose aluminum foil before carving. I gave up on the rosemary so basically it was sea salt & black pepper before going in the oven, more salt and pepper once it came out of the oven. Served with strong dijon mustard. It was truly awesome, although I'd have liked the skin maybe even crispier. I would love to give the rack idea and maybe turning the chicken idea a try, especially to get crispy skin on the back and sides.

Why does it seem like nobody is ever turning their chicken? I used to do it when I was a kid, but then I read so many chefs recipes which mention only sitting the chicken on its back on a roasting pan and never turning it that I gave up on the idea.

Beets were a bad idea. Since they color everything, I decided to cook them whole, then cut them, then add them to the turnips & carrots. When I cut them, I saw how purple my knife was getting and gave up the idea of mixing them, so I served them like that. Result is they weren't cooked in the same manner as the other veggies, and didn't seem like they belonged in the dish. I think I won't use beets again to accompany chicken - bad idea.

Turnips were not consistently cooked, and I discovered that I probably didn't peel them correctly: the outer pieces had a 2mm "skin" that was still white, tough, fibrous and bitter, while the centerpieces were translucent, melting and sweet. Next time, I'll peel a good 2mm thick layer of flesh all around the turnips before dicing them.

Parsnips? Rutabaga? I don't think I ever tried either! I will!!

Carrots were definitely al dente, or "cuisine moderne" (my fancy terms for undercooked). I need to cut them smaller or put them in the oven earlier.

I didn't do the garlic this time, but I was thinking of puttin the garlic "en chemise", meaning with its paper skin on. I've done that many times, and you get a beautifully confit garlic that's absolutely delicious. Didn't do it this time.

BDL, you KNOW I'm making a chicken stock within a day or two. Chicken before veggies? I had no idea. I usually put the carcass and some odd bones/skin/meat leftover in a pan, add carrots & celery, top with cold water, and let simmer for 3 hours. This time I'd like to add parsley stems, maybe some clove, and maybe I'll try your tip.. why do you want to get the meat out before the veggies in?
post #10 of 13
so I just wanted to add a coupla things. First, I usually cook a whole separate pan of roasted veges. I find I just don't have enough room for all the veges my family likes to eat, so a whole pan unto themselves. secondly, I would like to encourage people everywhere to cook more celery root. it has a wonderful flavor and i have been using the ugly looking bugger in roasted veges, soups and salads. boil or bake, its delicous.
"In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri. "
"In those days spirits were brave, the stakes were high, men were real men, women were real women, and small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri were real small furry creatures from Alpha Centauri. "
post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 
I knew celery root in salade (remoulade) or as a puree, never knew it could be simply diced and roasted. Will try! Thanks for the tip!

Tonight I used the roasted chicken leftovers to make stuffed tomatoes (Alain Ducasse's recipe), hmmmmmmmm!! :p
post #12 of 13
Okay, beets. I get pounds and pounds of them every summer from our pals with an organic farm, so I had to learn.

Roasted beets, the easy way
Wash, trim any really excessive hanging hairs, and cut off the greens leaving just a little bit attached (1/2 cm or so, give or take). If possible, do not puncture the beets. Toss in a little decent olive oil, sprinkle generously with salt and a little pepper. Get a big sheet of heavy aluminum foil, fold in half, put the beets in the center, and then wrap up with the foil, being sure to overlap each edge and fold over tightly. Place in a 350 oven (give or take), on a small sheet or the like, and roast for a good 45 minutes to 1:15, depending on size. To test, simply stab a fat one through the foil with a long toothpick or the like: it should go in smoothly, with just a little resistance. Remove from the oven and let cool. Unwrap the package. With a paring knife, trim off the greens. Under cold running water, slide the skin off the beets: it will come off easily. Now cut your beets into wedges or whatever shape you like.

They will still stain the world, but not nearly as much, and you don't lose any flavor. I reheat them in a small saucepan with a dab of butter. When hot, fold very lightly into the other vegetables: the staining will be minimal.

Even easier, and incorrectly often derided by people who haven't tried them right,

Boiled Beets Done Right
Wash, trim, and peel the beets, then cut in fat wedges. Put in a saucepan that they fill about halfway. Add water to cover by an inch or more, plus a good couple tablespoons butter and a pinch of salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to a fast simmer. Ignore while you do other things, but do not let it boil over or your kitchen will be red.

When the liquid has reduced to the point that it is beginning to thicken, remove the beets to a bowl. Continue reducing the liquid until it is syrupy. Add one more Tb butter, remove from heat, and swirl the pan around until the butter is melted in and the sauce is thick and smooth. Pour over the beets and eat at once. Wonder why anyone doesn't like boiled beets.

Jean-Georges Vongerichten goes one step further. He cooks and minces the greens, tosses with ricotta, and stuffs big ravioli with them. These cook very quickly, like 2-3 minutes (they're done when they float), so when the beets are just about ready you put the ravioli in boiling water and go back to the sauce thing. Ravioli on a plate, add beets, top with beautiful pink sauce. If the beets are very good, this is spectacular; if the beets are mediocre, this is still pretty decent.
post #13 of 13
A note about our locally raised chicken.....comes with a long neck (5+") attached to the body. After roasting this last one I put the left over cooked chicken in the pan juices back into the fridge.....the next day there was a lucious aspic. Chopped it with the chicken to make salad. Really exceptional.

parsnips and rutebegas are yummmm.....typically a sweeter cousin to turnips though the tiny white Japanese (hareki?) variety of turnips are like candy.
cooking with all your senses.....
cooking with all your senses.....
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