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Jazzed up roast chicken

It was a wet and grey Sunday and I wanted some sunshine in my roast… So I  jazzed up my roast chicken with Autumn veggies with a burst of mediterrananean sunshine and a double helping of Miles Davies.

Once cooked, a sprinkling of pomegranate seeds…brightened up this rainy evening. Better still Jai said its ‘the best chicken I’ve ever eaten’!

Prep time 20min
Cook time 1 hour 45 minutes
Serves 4-5
2kg whole chicken
1kg of sweet potatoes, scrubbed and roughly cut
250g parsnips, peeled and quartered long ways
200g carrots, scrubbed and quartered long ways
200g mixed olives (I use jarred, its cheaper!)
½ a pommegrante, seeded
fresh rosemary sprigs and thyme, handful
2 lemons, unwaxed
1 bulb of garlic, broken into cloves with skin on
olive oil
maple syrup (optional)
salt and pepper

Preheat oven to 190c. Rub the chicken with olive oil a generous amount of salt, freshly ground pepper and half of the rosemary. Avoid cooking the chicken when you have just taken it out the fridge as this will result in a chewy texture. I like to take out the chicken season, put it to one side and prep the veggies.

Prep the veg as described and layer on a large baking tray that will fit the chicken in too. Add the olives rest of the rosemary, half of the thyme to the veg and a generous glug of olive oil and seasons with salt and pepper (I some times like to drizzle the tiniest bit of maple syrup on my veg (brings out the sweetness and is heavenly!)

At this point you probably wont be able to see the bottom of the baking tray. Add the chicken in the middle on the top of the veggies. Scatter over half the garlic, putting the other half in the cavity along with the rest of the thyme. Prick the lemon all over using a sharp knife and pop in the microwave for about 30 seconds. OMG this will just ooze out that gorgeous lemony flavor. Place the lemon inside the cavity. Juice half a lemon and drizzle over the top

Pop in the oven at 200c and cook for about 1 hour and 30min. With chicken always check that the juices run clear and there is no pinkness. Leave to rest for 10 minutes and enjoy this feast with family and friends.