As wonderful as it is in the Virgin Islands, I do get homesick from time to time. Right now is one of those times. I could go on and on about all of the things I miss in Santa Barbara (especially my kids and my Little Brown Dog)... wah wah wah... but really I have to stop myself and say I am sitting here on our beautiful yacht surrounded by incredible beauty, and doing what I love... cooking!
When I am on charter there is no time to wallow or think about myself. It's all about serving our guests and making sure they are having a trip of a lifetime. There really is something to be said about getting out of yourself and taking care of others... it makes me happy. We are on a short break right now in-between charters and I have had a little more time to focus on myself. It's all about the projects, organizing, planning menus and getting ready for the next guests. It is a little less demanding and I've had time to miss home.
After a charter Hubby and I try to eat up the leftover provisions. It's when I can really get creative and put things together from what I have on hand. It feels good to deplete things before provisioning for the next guests. I happened to have a whole chicken, potatoes, carrots, onions, garlic and some fresh herbs. I was very much in the mood for some comfort food with my homesickness going on. To me, a roasted chicken screams comfort food. It probably goes back to my childhood when my Mom would put a pot roast in the oven with vegetables every Sunday afternoon and would not only feed her very large brood but always a few extra.
Also, the Christmas winds are still here and it's been a little chilly... ha ha.... so this seemed like the perfect meal even though it's not something I usually make here in the islands.
Certainly Hubby and I couldn't eat this in one seating. This makes perfect leftovers and I just love to do this every so often and use the meat for other things. Nothing goes to waste here. Once we've eaten our first meal I clean the carcass of all the meat then store. I take the carcass and the juice from the roasted chicken and place in a large pot with some water to make chicken stock. I use chicken stock in so many of my dishes and homemade is always better. I let the chicken stock come to a boil then simmer on low to medium heat for a few hours. Then remove the bones, strain the juice and let cool. Once it's cooled I like to skim the fat off the top. I then put the juice in zip top baggies portioned out to one cup then freeze. Now it's ready to go for the next time I have a recipe that calls for chicken stock.
My favorite thing to make with the leftovers is a chicken soup. I have a great recipe I learned from my Mom which I will post another time. Or, you can simply freeze the stock to use with other recipes and use the chicken for so many different dishes. We will enjoy the leftover chicken in quesadillas, chicken pesto paninis and Greek chicken wraps. There is no end to what you can do with leftover chicken.
This recipe is simple and I highly recommend it if you're in the mood for a little "comfort". It did the trick for me. I feel sooo much better now!
Fresh Herb and Citrus Roast Chicken with Vegetables
Recipe Type: Entree
Serves: Approx. 4
- 1 whole Chicken approximately 4 pounds
- 8 - 10 small Red and White Potatoes, cut into halves or fourths, depending on size
- 3 large Carrots, cut into sticks
- 1 large Red or White Onion, cut into large wedges
- 2 Lemons or 1 Lemon and 1 Orange, cut into fourths
- 4 Garlic Cloves, peeled and left whole
- 6 sprigs Fresh Rosemary, 2 sprigs stripped and chopped finely and 4 left whole
- 6 sprigs Fresh Lemon Thyme or Thyme, 4 sprigs stripped and chopped finely and 2 left whole
- 2 T fresh Flat Leaf Italian Parsley or Curly Leaf Parsley, chopped finely
- 2 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1/4 C Butter, melted
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Take Chicken out of refrigerator at least 30 minutes prior to baking.
- Preheat your oven to 425°.
- Pat Chicken dry with paper towels.
- Place chopped Potatoes, Carrots and Onions in large bowl.
- Mix one-half of the fresh Herbs with Butter and Salt and Pepper in small bowl and set aside.
- Toss the other half of fresh Herbs on the Vegetables with 2 Tablespoons Olive Oil and Salt and Pepper.
- Place Vegetables in small roasting pan.
- Place Chicken (breast side up) on top of Vegetables. Vegetables will also be around the Chicken.
- Rub the entire Chicken with the Herb and melted Butter mixture also lifting the skin on top using your hands to really get it in there.
- Place 2 sprigs of Rosemary, 4 sprigs of Thyme and 2 whole Garlic Cloves under the skin as well.
- Place other 2 sprigs of Rosemary in crease of Chicken legs.
- Place the Lemon and/or Orange wedges and 2 whole Garlic Cloves in cavity of Chicken being careful not to overstuff. I like to squeeze one of the lemon wedges inside the cavity just to add a little more flavor.
- Bake for at least 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until done. I like to baste the Chicken and Vegetables at least once about half-way through the baking time. If the skin is getting too dark, loosely cover with aluminum foil. You can use a meat thermometer to make sure the Chicken comes to temperature. The skin should be deep golden brown and the juices sizzling.
- Before carving, let rest for at least 20 minutes.
Enjoy the comfort!