There is something so very comforting with the humble old roast chook. It has that wonderful aroma whilst it cooks away in the oven. That crispy chicken skin just sends my mouth into a watery mess and the satisfaction of pulling away those meaty, tender drumsticks......need I say more!?
I think it also has that lovely shared family meal feel to it. Plonked right into the centre of the table, served straight from the roasting dish so that everyone can help themselves. And most probably fighting (the friendly variety) over who is going to have the legs, wings, breasts and that lovely moist little oyster bit!
I usually use a mix of all those traditional flavours when roasting these delightful ladies, lemon, thyme, garlic and olive oil. However, wanting to mix it up a tad and having a mind that is always thinking about food and what flavours go with this and that. I thought to myself what if I was to do a satay inspired roast chook?
After flicking through a few cookbooks, quite enjoyably, I came across one from the River Cottage cookbook, "light & easy" by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall that ticked all the boxes! With this in hand I set about creating one of the yummiest roast chickens I have ever had the pleasure in eating. My chief taste tester, Ben, gave it a double thumbs up too!
Serves 4 or 2 with leftovers for sandwich fillings (which are delish)
1.9kg free range chook, organic if you like too.
2 tbsp. crunchy peanut butter (I personally love Pics!)
2 tbsp. soy sauce
1 red chilli, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely diced
2 tbsp. ginger, finely diced
juice of 1 large lemon
2 tbsp. chopped coriander
1 tbsp. olive oil
400ml can coconut milk
1/2 can water
3 kaffir lime leaves
Preheat your oven to 210 degrees.
Rinse and pat dry the chook and make sure you get rid of that plastic pad from the bottom!! (don't laugh I have now done that on two separate occasions! not with chicken but with beef and lamb!!!) place onto some baking paper in a large baking dish.
Mix together the rest of the ingredients, from the peanut butter to the olive oil, until it forms a smoothish paste. season with salt and pepper and taste.
carefully separate the skin from the flesh from the neck and the bottom and gently push the paste in, pushing it down as you go. rub the remaining all over the outside. Drizzle with a little more oil and a sprinkling of salt and pepper. Place the chicken into the oven for 20 minutes.
Remove from the oven and pour in the coconut milk, fill that can with 1/2 the amount of water and kaffir lime leaves. pop the lemon halves that you used for the juice in as well. Reduce the oven down to 180 and cook for another 45 minutes.
Test to make sure she's cooked through, by piercing the thigh with a knife, if the juices run clear then she's ready! cover with foil to rest for about 10 minutes. And then spoon all of the juices in the bottom of the dish over the chook.
I served this with steamed basmati rice and sautéed kale, spring onions and peas. (recipe below)
A few stalks of kale, leaves stripped and chopped.
3 spring onions, sliced
1 cup of frozen peas
1/2 tsp fish sauce
1/2 cup unsalted cashews
juice of half a lemon
Heat a little coconut oil in a pan, add the spring onions and cook for a couple of minutes. Then add the kale, peas, sesame oil, fish sauce, cashews and lemon. cook until the peas have turned bright green. taste and season to your liking.