Roast Chicken with Lemon and Roots

Serves 4

This recipe was originally for guinea fowl, but it’s a wonderful chicken recipe, too. If you can get guinea fowl, just substitute it for the chicken. Our chicken was about 5 pounds, so we just increased the cooking time. Substitute any other root veggies you like in this recipe.

1 whole chicken (or guinea fowl) about 3½ pounds

Salt and pepper

1 lemon

2 tbsp grainy mustard

3 tbsp olive oil

3-4 large carrots, peeled and cut in 1 inch pieces

1 pound 10 oz/750g floury potatoes peeled and cut in chunks

3-4 large leeks

1 cup/300ml white wine

8 thin slices bacon

Heat the oven to 350F/180C

  1. Zest the lemon, cut it in half.
  2. Rinse the bird and season all over with salt and pepper. Stuff the lemon halves into the cavity of the bird, place in a roasting pan and put it in the oven.
  3. Put the lemon zest in a large bowl, add the mustard and oil and mix well.
  4. Peel the carrots and potatoes and cut in large chunks. Cut each leek into 3 or 4 pieces, depending on length. Add to the bowl with the oil and mustard and mix well until coated.
  5. When the bird has been roasting for 30 minutes add the veggies around the bird, sprinkle with a little salt and return to the oven for 45 minutes.
  6. Splash the wine over the bird and veggies and lay the bacon strips over the bird. Return to the oven for another 15-20 minutes or until the bacon is crisp and the veggies tender. Check with an instant thermometer. When the breast shows 160 F, the bird is done.
  7. Let the bird rest for 10 minutes and serve.

Source: Adapted from "BBC Good Food", October 2005

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