Saturday, June 18, 2011

Makin' It Smell Like Home

I am a nester.

I never thought I would fess up to it, but I am.  Gone are the days of longing to be out and about in the thick of things.  I love being at home and futzing away in the kitchen.  J and I have been spending a great deal of time in San Francisco this summer, and, although it's been fantastic running around the city gorging ourselves on the fantastic food, something has seemed out of place.

Our place just didn't smell like home.

Well, I fixed that by fixin' a good ole roasted chicken.  Nothing makes a house feel like a home than the comforting smells of simple cookin' wafting through the joint.

Try it.  You'll like it.

That's what I'm talkin' about.
Roasted Chicken with Fennel and Lemon

The lemon and the fennel come together beautifully to make a bright, fresh taste that you won't mind turning on your oven even on the hottest of summer nights!

 1 5 lb chicken
3 lemons, plus the zest and juice of another lemon (so I guess that would be a total of 4)
2 yellow onions
1 head of garlic
2 fennel bulbs
Healthy squirt of anchovy paste
1 Tbl parsley, minced
1 tsp rosemary, minced (plus 2-3 sprigs for a bouquet)
1 tsp tarragon, minced (plus 2-3 sprigs for a bouquet)
1 1/2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 Tbl olive oil
1 cup prosecco
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
3 Tbl flour
pinch of crushed red pepper
Salt n' pepper

Preheat oven to 450.

Slice onions, fennel, and three lemons into halves, then thirds. Place a majority of the veggies in the bottom of a roasting pan.  The rest will be used to stuff the cavity of the bird. Drizzle with some olive oil, salt and pepper, and toss to coat.  Slice garlic bulb in half horizontally.  No need to peel it.  Rinse off bird, inside and out, and pat dry. Season the cavity with salt and pepper and place in the roasting pan on top of the vegetables.  Stuff bird with remaining onions, fennel, lemons, garlic, and rosemary/tarragon bouquet.  Tie legs together with kitchen twine.

In a small bowl, combine mustard, anchovy paste, lemon juice, zest, herbs, and red pepper. Drizzle in oil while whisking.  Slather that mixture all over the bird.  Cover with foil and place in oven.  After 45 minutes, remove foil and cook for another 30 minutes or until bird is done (165 degrees).  Remove chicken from pan, allowing it to rest for 15 minutes under a foil tent.

Place roasting pan over two burners on a medium high heat.  De glaze the pan with the prosecco, using a wooden spoon to get up those yummy brown bits.  Reduce wine by at least half.  Add flour and cook for 3 minutes stirring constantly.  Add stock and simmer, whisking to remove any lumps.

Carve up the bird, and spoon the lemony, oniony, fennely goodness all over that sucker!

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