You’ll just love this chicken dish with its beautifully fragrant Middle Eastern spices and herbs it is sure to become a family favourite. Butterflying the chicken reduces the cooking time and is such an easy thing to do, while slow roasting the bird not only results in the most flavoursome and succulent chicken it is also one the healthiest ways to cook meat. Lower heat, gentle cooking methods preserve the enzymes in meat and vegetables and cause less inflammation in the body than higher heat cooking methods.
Middle Eastern Spiced Roast Chicken
- 1 large Organic Chicken
- 1 Lemon , juiced
- 1 bunch Dutch Carrots , or 8 small carrots halved lengthways
- 60 grams Butter or Ghee , softened
- 2 tsp Ground Cumin
- 2 tsp Ground Coriander
- 1 tsp Chilli Flakes , optional
- 1 tsp Salt , Himalayan or sea
- 1/2 tsp Black Pepper
- 2 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/4 cup Mint , chopped
- 1/4 cup Flat Leaf Parsley , chopped
- 2 tbsp Almonds or Pine Nuts , activated or lightly toasted
- 100g Sheep's Milk Yoghurt , or a thick Greek yoghurt
- 1 Lemon , cut into wedges
- Preheat oven to 240C.
- Butterfly the chicken by placing it on a chopping board, breast side down, and with sharp kitchen scissors cutting down either side of the backbone and removing it. Turn the bird over and press down firmly with the palms of your hands to flatten it, then gently separate the skin and flesh over the breasts with your fingers creating two pockets. Keep the backbone to use when making broth or stock.
- Squeeze the lemon juice all over the chicken and carrots.
- Stir together the softened butter, spices, salt and pepper and rub this mixture all over the carrots and the chicken, pushing some into each pocket.
- Place the chicken in a large baking dish with the carrots around it, then put the dish into the oven, immediately reducing the temperature to 125C. Roast for 2 hours, basting occasionally with the pan juices.
- If you would like to brown the chicken skin a little more, turn on the oven grill to low-medium and place the baking dish in the centre of the oven, not too close to the griller so it doesn't burn. Grill for approximately 3-5 minutes or until it is browned to your liking.
- Take the chicken out of the oven and rest for 5 minutes, then cut it into pieces.
- Drizzle the chicken with olive oil, scatter over the parsley, mint and nuts, and serve with yoghurt, lemon wedges and green salad or steamed green veggies.