Roast chook with broccoli tabbouleh and turmeric buttermilk dressing
SERVES 4 PREP AND COOK TIME 1 HOUR 30 MINUTES
On MasterChef I cooked this chicken, which led to much comment on email and social media, and people stopping me on the street telling me how wonderful it was.
2kg well-brought-up chook
125g unsalted butter, softened
⅓ cup French tarragon leaves
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons verjuice lemon wedges, to serve
1 head broccoli (about 360g)
⅓ cup baby spinach
3 spring onions
⅔ cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1 cup finely chopped mint
1 large ripe avocado, cut into small cubes
⅓ cup (45g) slivered almonds, toasted
1 tablespoon raw honey
1 teaspoon ground turmeric finely grated zest and juice of
½ cup (125ml) buttermilk
1 Take the chook out of the refrigerator 1 hour before cooking to bring it to room temperature.
2 Preheat the oven to 220°C (200°C fan-forced).
3 Place butter and tarragon in a food processor; whiz to combine, but don’t process it too much or butter will split. Add seasoning to taste.
4 Place chicken in a roasting tin and carefully slide your fingers under the skin around legs and across both breasts to separate it from meat. Place butter under the skin by pushing it in with your fingers.
5 Tuck wings under, then rub the skin of the chook with olive oil and season to taste. Place a piece of foil just over the chicken breast so it won’t dry out. Roast chicken for 30 minutes; reduce the oven temperature to 200°C (180°C fan-forced). Remove the foil and roast for another 30 minutes. Open the oven and pour verjuice over the bird; close the oven and cook for another 10 minutes. Remove chicken from the oven; turn it over in the roasting tin to rest upside down for 20 minutes before carving. After 5 minutes of resting, check whether chicken is cooked by inserting a skewer into thickest part of thigh – there shouldn’t be any pink juices. Alternatively, internal temperature should be 68°C. Leave to rest for another 15 minutes, it will keep warm in this time.
6 BROCCOLI TABBOULEH Meanwhile, make tabbouleh as close as possible to serving. Use a large knife to shave the head off the broccoli to give you fine pieces. Chop spinach and spring onions as finely as you can; place in a bowl with the broccoli. Gently stir in remaining ingredients.
7 BUTTERMILK DRESSING Whisk all the ingredients together. 8 Carve the chook and drizzle with all of the resting juices. Just as you’re about to serve, toss the Broccoli Tabbouleh with most of the Buttermilk Dressing. 9 To serve, spoon Broccoli Tabbouleh onto a serving platter and pour over the last bit of dressing. Serve with lemon wedges.