Serves 4, 30 minutes preparation, 1-2 hours cooking

A roast chicken doesn’t have to just be enjoyed on Sundays. With our simple recipe you could make one any night of the week for a truly delicious dinner.

Ingredients

  • 1 x 1.5-2kg/3lb 5oz-4lb 6oz free-range chicken, preferably free range and organic
  • 1 x lemon
  • small bunch fresh thyme
  • 2-3 garlic cloves
  • 50ml/2fl oz olive oil
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
  2. Slice the lemon halfway through lengthways. Insert a sprig of thyme into the slit then put the lemon inside the cavity of the chicken.
  3. Next make the flavoured oil. Strip the leaves from the remaining thyme stalks and place them in a bowl. Press the garlic cloves with the heel of your hand to lightly crush. Remove the skins and add the garlic cloves to the bowl then pour the olive oil over the thyme leaves and crushed garlic cloves.
  4. Using a pestle and mortar/mini food processor/hand blender, blend together the thyme leaves, garlic and olive oil until it is pretty runny.
  5. Spoon the thyme, garlic and oil mixture all over the chicken, working it into the flesh with your hands.
  6. Once seasoned with the flavoured oil, place the chicken in a roasting tray and pour over the remaining flavoured oil. Season the chicken generously with sea salt and black pepper.
  7. Cover the chicken loosely with foil and roast in the oven for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, remove the foil and roast for another 20-30 minutes and reduce the temperature to 160C-180C/320F-350F/Gas 3-4. It's fully cooked when the juices run clear when the bird is pierced in the thigh with a skewer or sharp knife.
  8. Turn off the oven and let the bird rest in the residual heat for at least ten minutes then remove from the oven and carve
  9. Serve the carved chicken with seasonal vegetables, our Creamy Mash and gravy.

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