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The Easiest Roast Chicken

I began making roast chicken every week after the birth of my daughter. I started this tradition because I wanted her to have a distinct memory to look back on from her childhood. If it was Sunday she knew what her mama was making for dinner. When I tell my friends I make a whole chicken on a weekly basis they look at me like I'm crazy. People are so intimidated to cook an entire bird these days! What they don't realize is how incredibly simple it is. Not only that but it's a cost-effective way to feed a family of 4. Or if you have a smaller family, like mine, you'll have some leftovers to make sandwiches or top salads with the next day. At home, we call this meal "Sunday Chicken". It's always a hit, tummies are happy and full, and plates are scraped clean.

Ingredients

  • 1 (4-5 lb) whole organic chicken
  • 1 ½ tbsp sea salt
  • 1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh sage
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley, plus extra sprigs for cavity
  • 1 small lemon, halved
  • 1 small sweet onion, halved

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 450º F.
  2. Rinse the chicken and pat the skin and cavity with paper towels so that it's completely dry. Place the chicken in a medium-size baking dish or roasting pan, breast-side down.
  3. Combine the salt, pepper, sage, and parsley in a small bowl, and rub the chicken with half of the mixture on the first side. Flip the chicken over and rub the remaining mixture on the other side (breast-side up) so that the whole outside of the bird is well covered with seasoning. Stuff the cavity of the chicken with 2-3 sprigs of parsley, lemon halves, and onion halves.
  4. Place the chicken in the oven and roast, uncovered, for 1-1 ½ hours, or until the skin is golden brown, crackly, and the internal temperature reads 165º F on a meat thermometer. My oven cooks the chicken perfectly in 1 hour and 25 minutes but every oven is different.
  5. Remove the chicken and baste it in its pan drippings. Loosely tent it with foil and let it rest for 10-15 minutes in the pan.

I like the flavor of sage and parsley together but you could use a variation of herbs like thyme and rosemary instead if you prefer those. I serve this easy roast chicken with buttermilk biscuits and sautéed green beans, and my family devours it every time. I hope yours will enjoy this simple tradition as much as mine!

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