Roast Chicken with Potatoes and Garlic

It’s Sunday. Sunday dinner isn’t special unless there is a roast chicken. You know the skin must be crisp, golden, and salty with a strong hint of black pepper and garlic. Here is just the thing from Kitchen Confidante:

1 whole chicken
2 tablespoons butter, melted
coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Aromatics for stuffing the chicken:

  • half a lemon
  • half an onion, quartered
  • garlic cloves, peeled
  • fresh or dried organic herbs (I recommend, like the S&G song, parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme)

3-4 potatoes, halved and quartered
1 whole head of garlic, separated
2 tablespoons olive oil
more coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
about 2 tablespoons flat leaf parsley, minced (I used cilantro) for garnish

Preheat the oven to 425˚F. Let the chicken come to room temperature half an hour before roasting. Prepare a roasting pan by spraying it with cooking spray for easy clean up.

Pick over the chicken and remove any excess fat and feathers. Rinse and pat dry the chicken inside and out. Salt and pepper the cavity. Stuff the aromatics inside then tie the legs together with kitchen twine. Bend the wing tips back behind the chicken.

Brush melted butter on the outside of the chicken and generously salt and pepper the chicken. In the prepared roasting pan, put the potatoes and garlic. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle salt and pepper to taste. With your hands, toss the potatoes and garlic in the oil, salt, and pepper. Put the trussed chicken in the center of the roasting pan. Arrange potatoes and garlic around the chicken and put roasting pan in the oven. Roast the chicken according to the following timetable:

3-4 pound roasting chicken: 45 minutes
4-5 pound roasting chicken: 1 hour
5-6 pound roasting chicken: 1 1/2 hours

Sprinkle the parsley on the potatoes. Ah, the chicken and potatoes were golden brown and juicy! It was a disappointment that the flavors of the aromatics were not more discernible. We ate the chicken with a simple spinach sauté and cabbage sautéed with bacon and onions. I didn’t have a roasting rack so the underside was not as crisp as the topside, but no matter; the leftovers will go into a quick chicken pot pie tomorrow.

Danish Aebleskiver

Aebleskiver? What is it and how do you pronounce it? It’s a pancake cooked on the stovetop in a seven-cup cast iron mold called an aebleskiver which is pronounced “able-skewer.” The pancakes are tedious to make but well worth it. They are light tasty mouthfuls of pancake and fresh fruit. I used granny smith apple and banana, first separately, then mixed together, then with an added tablespoon of brown sugar.

2 cups unbleached all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups buttermilk or sour milk*
3 eggs, separated
Chopped fresh fruit, 1/2 apple and 1 whole medium banana
Cooking spray, or butter, or oil
2 bamboo skewers
Confectioner’s sugar, optional
Cinnamon sugar, optional

*To make 1 cup of sour milk put 1 tablespoon white vinegar in a 1-cup measure and top up with milk to the one-cup mark. I used non-fat milk.

In a large bowl, sift together the flour, salt and baking soda. Add the buttermilk or sour milk and the egg yolks. Stir to combine.

In another large bowl, whip the egg whites until soft peaks form. Scrape the egg whites into the batter and gently combine.

Spray the aebleskiver cup molds with cooking spray. You can use butter or oil if you like but I prefer the cooking spray because it has less calories and is easier to use on the hot cups. On medium heat, heat the mold. Be careful because the handle gets hot so use a pot holder.

Spoon batter into each cup so that it is 1/3 full. Top each with 1/2 teaspoon chopped fruit. Put about a teaspoon batter on top of the fruit so that each cup is 2/3 full. You may need to reduce the heat to medium-low if the bottoms start to brown too quickly. When the top starts to look shiny and have little bubbles, it’s time to turn, about 1 1/2 minutes. Using the bamboo skewers, loosen the edges and turn each pancake over. Cook for about 1 1/2 minutes on the second side. Use the skewers like chopsticks to remove pancakes from the cup molds.

Serve with confectioner’s sugar and/or cinnamon sugar for rolling. Aebleskivers are best eaten warm the day they are made.

Makes 35-40 two-inch pancakes.

Creamy Caesar Fish Fillets with Tomatoes and Onions

Now that it’s Lent it’s become a challenge to go meatless on Fridays. Last weekend Marcy made this dish for dinner. It was so simple to make and so full of flavor I asked Marcy to give me the recipe. I made it and AJ loved it.

3 tilapia fish fillets (any white fish will do)
1 egg, beaten
3/4 cup spicy hot breadcrumbs (I only had whole wheat on hand)
1 tablespoon oil, plus a little more
2 medium tomatoes, diced
1 small onion, chopped
1 -1 1/2 cups creamy caesar dressing

Preheat the oven 350˚F. Prepare a 9 inch square baking dish by spraying it with cooking spray. Set aside.

Put the beaten egg in a plate. In another plate, put the breadcrumbs. Dip each fillet in the egg and then dredge in the breadcrumbs. Heat the oil in a skillet and lightly fry the fillets until light brown. Put them in the prepared dish and set aside. Don’t wash the skillet

To the same skillet,  add a little more oil, if needed, and sauté the onions and tomatoes until just wilted, about 3-5 minutes. Pour the creamy caesar dressing over the fillets in the prepared baking dish. Top with the onions and tomatoes. Bake for 30 minutes or until bubbly.