Roast chicken caponata-style

Australian Women’s Weekly NZ - - Contents -


1.8kg chicken 1 medium (140g) lemon ½ bunch fresh basil 1 bunch fresh flat-leaf pars­ley 1 tea­spoon dried oregano leaves 50g un­salted but­ter, at room tem­per­a­ture 2 cloves gar­lic, chopped finely 1 tea­spoon sea salt flakes 1 large (500g) egg­plant, cut into 2cm dice 4 medium (800g) red cap­sicums, seeded, cut into strips 3 medium (500g) red onions, bases in­tact, cut into 8 wedges each 2 ta­ble­spoons ex­tra vir­gin olive oil 2 ta­ble­spoons red wine vine­gar 1 cup (120g) pit­ted black olives ½ cup (75g) raisins rocket and radic­chio salad, to serve 1 Pre­heat the oven to 180°C (160°C fan-forced). Lightly oil a large heavy­based bak­ing dish and place in the oven. Pat the chicken dry, in­side and out, with paper towel. 2 Finely grate the rind from the lemon; halve lemon. Re­serve the basil and pars­ley stalks; chop the basil leaves and half the pars­ley leaves finely. Com­bine the chopped herbs, oregano, but­ter, gar­lic, rind and half the salt in a medium bowl; sea­son but­ter mix­ture with freshly ground black pep­per. Us­ing your fin­gers, sep­a­rate the skin from the breast of the chicken, in­clud­ing the tops of the thighs and drum­sticks. Push the but­ter mix­ture un­der the skin and spread it evenly over the breast and tops of the thighs. Place re­served herb stalks and the halved lemon in the cav­ity of the chicken. Tie legs to­gether with kitchen string. 3 Place the egg­plant, cap­sicum and onion in the pre­heated bak­ing dish; driz­zle with the oil and vine­gar, and sprin­kle with the re­main­ing salt. Stir to com­bine. Place the chicken in the cen­tre of the dish. 4 Place the dish in the oven with breast fac­ing the back. Roast for 30 min­utes; stir the veg­eta­bles. Turn the bak­ing dish around so that the legs are fac­ing the back. Roast for a fur­ther 30 min­utes. Stir in olives and raisins; roast for a fur­ther 15 min­utes or un­til chicken is cooked through. (To check that the chicken is cooked, pierce the thick­est part of the thigh with a skewer and the juices should run clear. The breast should be golden brown with a lovely layer of herbs un­der­neath the skin and the veg­eta­bles should be soft.) Sea­son veg­eta­bles with salt and freshly ground black pep­per. 5 Sprin­kle chicken with the pars­ley leaves. Serve with salad, if de­sired. Not suit­able to freeze or mi­crowave.

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