Take It From a Five Year Old

I've been taking our lunch and dinner pics daily of late. It might be a while before I write about a dish but at least I'll know I have it in my arsenal of pics ready to use when it inspires me  to write about it.

So, I've been on a Japanese bent lately with the cooking, but there was a time when I was very obsessed with finding the perfect roast chicken dish.

I think I found it.

I've baked this chicken dish frequently and my five year old requests it on occasion. She, in fact, has told me it is one of her favorites and is, "So good!" It's a keeper and an old stand-by. Thanks to Gwynneth Paltrow  - actor, clothes horse, health obsessed, and a really good cook. I was surfing through her GOOP website a year ago and discovered her "Make" section, featuring some really health conscious, awesome recipes.

She calls her roast chicken, a quick home recipe. Wow, I've tried it and haven't looked back. It's my go-to recipe when I want a  quick, tasty chicken recipe. To not try this, would be a shame. You'd really miss out. It's lemony, savory, and just plain good. Take it from my five year old.

Quick Roast Chicken and Fingerling Potatoes
Adapted from Gwyneth Paltrow's recipe on GOOP

TIME: 1 hour
  • 1 3 to 4 pound chicken, washed and dried
  • 1 lemon, cut in half
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • a few sprigs each fresh rosemary, sage and thyme
  • coarse salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • about 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 dozen fingerling potatoes (or any small potato), peeled
Preheat the oven to 450ºF (on convection if possible).
Using a pair of sharp kitchen shears, remove and discard the backbone of the chicken (or save it for making stock). With a sharp pairing knife, remove the thigh bones — simply follow the bone and let your knife do the work for you. You can also ask your butcher to do this.

Lay the chicken, breast side up, in a roasting tray and press down with your hands so that it flattens. Squeeze over the lemon, getting the juice on and around the entire chicken, and throw the lemon halves into the tray. Toss in the garlic cloves, being sure to tuck a few underneath the bird along with the fresh herbs. Liberally salt and pepper the chicken and drizzle over enough olive oil to coat — about 3 tablespoons.

Meanwhile bring a saucepan of water to a boil and season with a few pinches of salt. Boil the potatoes for 8 minutes. Drain the potatoes, put them back in the pot with the lid on and shake vigorously to ‘fluff’ their exteriors. Put the potatoes in the tray with the chicken and drizzle with olive oil to coat (about another 3 tablespoons) and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Cover the tray with tinfoil, roast for 20 minutes, remove the tinfoil and baste with the juices that have collected on the bottom. Roast for an additional 20 minutes, uncovered, or until a thermometer inserted into the thigh registers at least 165ºF and the skin is browned.

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