New Year, New Cookbooks!
I had a great December which was filled with great food. Most of it I either forgot to take a picture or didn’t have my camera with me. I must remember to throw it in my purse when I go out. I had some great food out last month. Part of my Christmas present I enjoyed early was a mouth-watering dinner at Cafe Brio. Thanks Love! The holiday also brought me a multitude of gifts for my kitchen. Thank you to everyone.
My little brother gave me the new Thomas Keller cookbook, Ad Hoc at Home. I love it. I don’t have any of his older cookbooks, but this one looks more on my level and learning curve for now. I tried the whole roasted chicken on a bed of root vegetable last night. Fantastic. My chicken was a bit larger than I would have liked, but the only medication free, free range one that were fresh were big. I guess happy chickens are fat chickens. I never used to care so much about them being medication free until working in the hospital with all the antibiotic resistant germs. Anytime one can limit contact with antibiotics is a good.
So back to chicken. I let it dry in the refrigerator for most of the day and then let it sit on the counter to come to room temperature for a couple hours as the recipe instructs. I had to watch and make sure the cat didn’t investigate. As a peace-offering I did give the cat and dog the neck. I slightly varied the combination of root vegetable to suit my tastes, next time I would probably use a third leek instead of two. I also added parsnips that I had on hand. It was a simple dinner, cut up all the vegetable, toss with some oil, sprigs of thyme and smashed garlic cloves, roast chicken on top.
I seasoned the chicken inside and out with salt, pepper, garlic and thyme. I like to tuck a bit of whatever herb I use under the skin over the breast meat as well, although be careful not to poke a hole through the skin. I buttered the chicken before placing it on the bed of vegetables but didn’t use as much as called for.
I couldn’t tell you in the end how long it took me to cook. I started it at 475F for the first 25 minutes. I also put my chicken breast side down for the first part here. Someone suggested it to me years ago to keep the breast meat super moist. Then I roasted it at 400F for the rest of the time. Like I said I lost track of how long that was, as I was more focused on my thermometer giving me the magic 160F reading.
whole roasted chicken on a bed of root vegetables (as printed in ad hoc at home)
One 4 to 4 1/2 pound chicken
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled
6 thyme sprigs
2 large leeks
3 tennis-ball-sized rutabagas
2 tennis-ball-sized turnips
4 medium carrots, peeled, trimmer and cut in half
1 small yellow onion, trimmed, leaving root end intact, and cut into quarters
8 small (golf-ball-sized) red-skinned potatoes
1/3 cup canola oil
4 tablespoons (2 ounces) unsalted butter, at room temperature.