Friday, 8 June 2012

Empire Roast Chicken

Can't decide between a curry and a roast dinner? Have both! This is, by far, our favourite roast dinner. Its from Jamie Olivers website, and the flavours are amazing. The gravy is unusual but really tasty, I would recommend you definitely make it along side the chicken. I also made the bombay roast potatoes, and served a side salad alongside. Now a chicken will usually last us for at least 2 meals - not this one! The kids & my husband picked the carcass completely clean. It was an amazing dinner, if I do say so myself. It really is worth the faff of cooking it. Cannot wait to have it again! Please remember that you have to marinate the chicken overnight!

For the chicken and marinade
  1.4kg free-range chicken
  1 heaped tablespoon each
finely grated garlic, fresh
ginger and fresh red chilli
  1 heaped tablespoon
tomato purée
  1 heaped teaspoon each of
ground coriander, turmeric,
garam masala and ground cumin
  2 heaped teaspoons
natural yogurt
  2 lemons
  2 level teaspoons sea salt

For the gravy
  1 stick of cinnamon
  3 small red onions, peeled
  10 cloves
  3 tablespoons each of
white wine vinegar and
Worcestershire sauce
  3 level tablespoons plain flour

 800ml chicken stock
  optional: natural yogurt,
to serve

For the Bombay-style potatoes
  800g new potatoes
  sea salt and ground pepper
  1 lemon
  2 or 3 tablespoons olive oil
  a knob of butter
  1 heaped teaspoon each
of black mustard seeds,
cumin seeds, garam masala
and turmeric
  1 bulb of garlic
  1 fresh red chilli, deseeded
and finely sliced
  2 tomatoes, roughly chopped
  1 small bunch of fresh coriander

 Slash the chicken’s legs a few times right down to the bone. Get a roasting tray slightly bigger than the chicken, then add all of the marinade ingredients and mix together well. Put on a pair of clean rubber gloves, then really massage those flavours over and inside the chicken so it’s smeared everywhere. Ideally marinate overnight in the fridge.

 Preheat the oven to 200°C/400°F/gas 6 and organize your shelves so the roasting tray can sit right at the bottom, the chicken can sit directly above it, right on the bars of the shelf, and the potatoes can go at the top. Halve any larger potatoes, then parboil them in a large pan of salted boiling water with a whole lemon for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until the potatoes are cooked through. Drain the potatoes then let them steam dry

Roughly chop the onions and add to the roasting tray along with the cinnamon stick, cloves, vinegar and Worcestershire sauce, then whisk in the flour. Pour in the stock or water, then place this right at the bottom of the oven. Place the chicken straight on to the bars of the middle shelf, above the roasting tray. Cook for 1 hour 20 minutes.

Put another sturdy roasting tray over a medium heat and add the olive oil, a knob of butter, the mustard and cumin seeds, garam masala and turmeric – work quickly because if the fat gets too hot the mustard seeds will pop everywhere. Halve a bulb of garlic and add it straight to the pan, with the sliced chilli and chopped tomatoes. Add your drained potatoes to the tray, mix everything together, then season well. Finely slice and scatter in the coriander stalks, and keep the leaves in a bowl of water for later. After the chicken has been in for 40 minutes, put the potatoes in.

Once the chicken is cooked, move it to a board and carefully peel off the dark charred bits to reveal perfect chicken underneath. Pass the gravy through a coarse sieve into a pan, whisking any sticky goodness from the pan as you go. Bring to the boil and either cook and thicken or thin down with water to your preference. Put it into a serving bowl and drizzle over a little yogurt. Get your potatoes out of the oven and put them into a serving bowl, then serve the chicken on a board next to the sizzling roasties and hot gravy


  1. This is definitely going on my try soon list. It looks amazing.

  2. Yum, looks lush!