On Sunday, I had this brilliant idea to roast a whole chicken. I had never cooked a whole chicken before, but it sounded like a good idea to try during one of our Sunday family dinners with the Hungry Trio.
When I thought about a flavor profile for this meal, I had apples on my mind. I wanted an apple cider roasted chicken. I found a recipe online from Spicy Southern Kitchen that seemed to fit my desire.
The recipe was quite simple. There are only seven ingredients, including seasoning. Putting together the chicken was easy. I seasoned it, stuffed it with some apple and carrots, rubbed butter on it, and then pour some apple cider over it that had been reducing on the stove. Then, we let the oven do its magic.
I had requested we cook this meal at Chris and Andrew’s, even though we had just cooked there. I knew they had a roasting pan (and I did not). I also wanted to go over to Silver Spring that day anyway to go to Michael’s. I spent nearly $30 on holiday sprinkles, and I am not ashamed. It’s all for the love of my craft.
The chicken roasted for about 1 hour, 20 minutes. By that time, the internal temperature had reached 163 degrees, and we felt that was close enough. The skin had a beautiful dark hue and looked perfectly crispy. I was worried if we cooked it any longer it might burn from the sugars in the cider.
While the chicken was roasting, Chris was working on some sides. He made roasted carrots (at my request) and cinnamon potatoes. I was not sure how I felt about these potatoes. Cinnamon and potatoes seemed liked a strange mix, but I was willing to give it a chance. I really have become much more adventurous when it comes to food.
This turned out to be quite an amazing meal. We all commented that this seemed to be the first time we all cooked together where everything was a hit. We have had a few recent experiments fall flat.
Let’s start with the chicken. This chicken was so tender and juicy. It was actually releasing juice as Andrew cut into it. We put him in charge of carving the chicken.
I was definitely worried that the meat would be dry, especially the breast. It wasn’t at all. It was the exact opposite. This juicy chicken also did not lack flavor. I was getting a good mix of flavors from the apple cider and the onions/apples inside. This chicken was so easy to devour, and we ate most of it. I did have a piece of the breast to take home to use for a project I had in mind for the chicken carcass.
The carrots Chris made were delicious. I think roast carrots or carrot fries are completely underrated. They pop with color and flavor, and they are so easy to make. We just drizzled some olive oil over the carrots and then seasoned them with season salt, pepper, and dried rosemary.
Finally, I have a few thoughts on these potatoes. I was actually not expecting to like them. I didn’t think the flavors were going to work…but they really did! These potatoes were so good. Chris cooked them to a perfect tenderness. The spices were warm and cozy. It is the kind of warmth in food that hugs your insides. I was quite impressed and even sorry that I doubted my best friend’s tastes. It is not like he doesn’t have a great track record for choosing good food. I just really didn’t trust this one.
Finally, I can’t go without mentioning the mulled wine that Chris made. He had a persimmon lying around the house. Why? Well, I don’t really know, but he did. In fact, neither Andrew nor even knew what a persimmon looked like until that day. But hey, if I get some wine out of this, I am cool with learning something new. I enjoyed a nice glass of this hot wine drink. It was a nice treat as we waited for the chicken to roast.
I honestly think this was a perfect meal for one of our Sunday family dinners. I am glad after talking about this for awhile that we have been consistent with making these meals together. It is a good way to ensure we get to see each other and a good way to mentally prepare for the week to come. Oh, and the good food is a plus! I can’t wait to see what we come up with for 2019.