Catalina Cooking: No spring rosemary-lemon chicken

Courtesy photo

So Jen “shows up” to the house and I had a fresh chicken in the refrigerator! We love our Jen. Perfect … back in the ’70s when I was learning to be a chef, I was lucky enough to work for Ken Frank of La Toque on Sunset Bl. This was one of our weekly staff dinners. We always had a great staff dinner being mostly French style but great Mexican as well. This one I was fond of and one of the first to teach my daughters when they were around six. When they had sleep overs, the parents would call and say “are you kidding me, your daughter just made us the most incredible chicken for dinner.” Thats how easy, simple and good this is. Especially as a teen getting a nice glass of French wine with staff meals! I do this with Tofu for Maggie and any vegetarians with success. This is for spring and any other day you are craving! Any comments, suggestions or questions, email me at captainvaughnallen@gmail.com. I would love to hear from you!

1 4# or so Organic Hormone Free Chicken if possible.

1 Whole lemon cut in half. One half sliced thin and the other half into six chunks

2 Large stalks of fresh Rosemary. Look at your neighbors gardens Its allover.

1 Large Sweet onion Cut off about 1” off each end, reserve and slice thin the rest

6 Cloves Garlic unpeeled

8 Red Potatoes sliced into 8ths

6 Carrots in quarters

Sea Salt

Black Pepper

Paprika

Turn on your oven to 400 degrees. Clean your sink, dry your chicken and put it head down in the drain to open up the cavity. Season with salt, pepper. Add the ends of the onion, chunks of lemon, broken up stalk of Rosemary and drizzle some olive oil over. I like to truss with butchers twine but this is not necessary as my daughters proved this to be fine without. Take your finger and gently loosen up the skin around the breasts and thighs and slide the sliced lemon and sprigs of rosemary between the meat and the skin. Rub with olive oil and season with salt, pepper and paprika. Next in a stainless bowl, add your potatoes, onions rosemary removed from stem, salt, pepper, paprika and some olive oil to coat. Toss this together really good.

On a baking sheet or large roasting pot, layer the carrots on the bottom and season and drizzle a bit of olive oil on it. Lay the chicken on a bit of one side with the thought that you will rotate it halfway through to evenly cook. Arrange the potatoes around the chicken evenly. I as well put the giblets in as well and munch when they are done! Yum! Keep an eye out every 15 minutes. When it starts to brown on one side, carefully rotate to the other side. Re arrange the potatoes as well to evenly cook and crisp. After about 45 minutes the potatoes should be ready. Remove them and put in a pan to reheat right before serving. This should take around an hour and a half to finish.

Remove the bird from the oven and pour the juice into a sauce pan. If easier into your roasting pan is fine. Pop the potatoes back into the oven. Slice the breasts meat from the bone and separate the leg and thighs. If pink, just cook a bit more. Arrange on a platter. Arrange the potatoes and carrots around and pour the jus over the sliced bird. I like to serve with a nice light green salad and steamed zucchini with butter and parsley. Remember the leeks from last weeks risotto? Use the tops and the bones on the chicken to make a great vegetable stock. Salad Dressing. Used jelly jar add chopped shallot,

garlic, parsley, salt, pepper, Table Spoon Dijon 1 oz each vinegar and water. Two oz olive oil.

Put top on and shake. Good for a few days in the fridge! Enjoy … I know we always do.

Kindest regards,

Vaughn Allen

Capt. Vaughn Allen was a private chef and butler for the ultra rich and famous most of his life. Vaughn was recently called out of retirement to cook the intimate celebration dinner for Sir Ringo Starr and his close friends. Vaughn is a businessman, scuba instructor and most recently a yacht broker in Redondo Beach. You can contact him at captainvaughnallen@gmail.com.

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